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Deakin University is committed to providing an inclusive and accessible environment for all students and staff, with a range of technology solutions and support. We offer a number of assistive hardware and software technologies for use by students and staff with disabilities both on and off campus. While these technologies can support the specific needs of people with disability, they are useful tools for everyone. Our goal in providing this service is that it is as flexible and individualised as possible with the aim of improving education and employment outcomes for students and staff with disabilities.
A number of software applications are available for use by all students and staff. These are included on the Software Essentials available to first year students. They are also available on all computers on-campus. These include (reviewed each trimester to ensure relevance):
|Software application||What it does||Software Download|
Converts text to speech
Balabolka is a Text-To-Speech (TTS) program. All computer voices installed on your system are available to Balabolka. The on-screen text can be saved as a WAV, MP3, OGG or WMA file. The program can read the clipboard content, view the text from DOC, RTF, PDF, FB2 and HTML files, customize font and background colour, control reading from the system tray or by the global hotkey's.
|Balabolka - text-to-speech|
Browsealoud reads web pages aloud for people who find it difficult to read online. Reading large amounts of text on screen can be difficult for those with literacy problems of visual impairments.
Browsealoud makes using the internet easier for people who:
Converts text to speech
NaturalReader is Text to Speech software with natural sounding voices. This easy to use software can convert any written text such as MS Word, webpages, PDF files and emails into spoken words. NaturalReader can also convert any written text into audio files such as MP3 or WAV for your CD player, iPod, or MP3 player.
|Natural reader - text-to-speech|
|NonVisual Desktop Access (NVDA)||Converts text on the screen to speech providing feedback via synthetic speech and Braille (screen reader for Microsoft Windows).||Non Visual Desktop Access|
|Accessible PDF Reader||Accessible PDF is a free program from Claro Software that lets you read PDFs with the colours and fonts you want and makes it easy to read the text aloud with other programs such as ClaroRead. You can zoom in and out, use high- or low-contrast colours, and save your PDF as text or a web page for future use.||Accessible PDF Reader|
|Black Window||Black Window is used to enhance visibility and reduce distractibility of other programs. It fills the screen with a black background which remains underneath other programs. Minimise or close the program to restore normal Windows appearance.||Black Window|
|Click-N-Type||Click-N-Type is an on-screen virtual keyboard designed for anyone with a disability that prevents him or her from typing on a physical computer keyboard. As long as the physically challenged person can control a mouse, trackball, touch screen or other pointing device, the software keyboard allows you to send keystrokes to virtually any Windows application or DOS application that can run within a window.||Click-N-Type|
|Virtual Magnifying Glass||Virtual Magnifying Glass is a free, open source, cross-platform screen magnification tool. It is simple, customisable and easy-to-use.||Virtual Magnifying Glass|
Software and hardware to cater for a range of accessibility needs are available in each campus Library. Note that if you would like to use a particular software application not listed below, please contact the eSolutions Service Desk to discuss your needs.
The above hardware and software are additions to the standard software installed on all other campus computers. To initially locate the assistive technology computers, please speak to a staff member at the information service desk in the Library on your preferred campus. To view availability of a specific computer, visit the current computer laboratory statistics website.
|Technology||What it does||Additional information|
|Pearl Camera||OCR (Optical Character Recognition) scanning and reading||Pearl Camera user guide|
|Dual monitors||Allows viewing of work across two monitors|
|Large print white keys on black keyboard||Allows clearer visibility of keyboard||User guide|
|Braille printer (Burwood campus only)||Allows printing in Braille|
|JAWS||Converts text to speech||JAWS user guide|
|Dragon naturally speaking||Converts speech to text||Dragon user guide|
|Zoomtext||Magnifies screen content, converts text to speech||Zoomtext user guide|
|OpenBook||OCR (Optical Character Recognition), allows scanning of typed text into editable text||OpenBook user guide|
|Wynn||Converts text to speech, OCR (Optical Character Recognition), allows scanning of typed text into editable text, provides spelling and grammar support||Wynn user guide|
|Windows screen magnifier||Magnifies screen content (note available on all student and staff computers)||Windows screen magnifier user guide|
Some technology requires either the use of a headset or microphone. Students or staff will need to provide their own for health and safety reasons.
Students can print to any printer available for student use on-campus.
Do you have other support or technology requirements that could assist you in studying or working with Deakin University? Please contact the eSolutions Service Desk to set up a one-on-one consultation session to discuss your needs and all reasonable steps will be taken to accommodate you.
Read more about Deakin University's Disability Resource Centre.
To view detailed maps of our campuses, click here.