Assistive software helps all students access learning materials and complete assignments. This section looks at the software available on London Met computers, software provided by the Disabled Students' Allowances and freely available assistive software. Below you will find software information and links to video tutorials, many of which are provided by assistive technology specialists, Diversity and Ability.
Assistive software on London Met computers
Computers for student use at London Met have a range of assistive software. London Met is not able to provide copies of the software below for personal use. The Disabled Students' Allowances (DSA) may provide copies of these and other software as part of a DSA support package.
You can find ClaroRead plus on the desktop on all London Met computers. ClaroRead plus helps you with reading and writing tasks. If you find reading difficult, tiring or have a slow reading speed, you may benefit from listening to your reading material. ClaroRead plus reads aloud most reading material, including your own work. Watch the tutorial below for further instructions.
MindView can be found on the program list from the start menu or by typing 'Mindview' into the search bar next to the Windows Start icon. Mindview is a mind mapping software. You can plan essays and presentations visually. Mind maps are useful for revision and developing your ideas. If you find structuring your ideas difficult, try using a mind map.
FreeMind is another mind mapping software.FreeMind can be found on the program list from the start menu or by typing 'Freemind' into the search bar next to the Windows Start icon.
You can find Zotero in the program list of all London Met computers or by typing 'Zotero' into the search bar next to the Windows Start icon. Zotero collects your references and inserts them into your assignment. You can get help with Zotero from your Academic Liaison Librarian. You can download Zotero to your home laptop or computer from Zotero’s website.
Find out more about referencing through Library Matters, a Weblearn module developed by the library. Read the section devoted to Zotero and other referencing software. Don't forget to check the London Met referencing guidance to make sure your references and citations are correctly formatted.
Windows accessibility features
Click the Start button, select All Programs then click on Ease of Access. Here you will find Windows Magnifier and Narrator. Magnifier enlarges sections of the screen, the whole screen or the area around the cursor. Narrator reads text on the screen and describes visual notifications.
To launch the Magnifier use the keyboard shortcut: Windows key and +
Software provided by the Disabled Students' Allowances
The DSA can provide students with individual copies of assistive software. The DSA will also provide specialist training to teach you how to use the software. Below are the most commonly recommended software.
Dragon naturally speaking
Dragon is a speech-to-text software. It recognises your speech and types for you. You could use speech-to-text software if you find putting ideas into writing difficult, your typing speed is slow or you find typing difficult. Produce your written assignments quickly and confidently and let Dragon tackle spelling.
Sonocent Audio Notetaker
Do you find your notes don’t capture all the information from your lecture? Many students use lecture recordings for full and accurate lecture notes which better support their assignments and revision. Sonocent Audio Notetaker combines your lecture recording with presentation slides and your own notes and pictures.
This is another Text-to-Speech software which is similar to Claro Read. It highlights text as it reads out aloud. You can also make a ‘word cloud’ of the text to see which words are mentioned most frequently.
Other useful software
Explore these free websites and web browser add-ons.
Popular apps for your smart devices. Search for these apps in the Apps store (Apple devices) or Google play store (Android devices). The majority of these apps are freely available and some have a small fee.
Natural Reader (reads text aloud)
Planning - Mind Maps
Scanning and annotating
Skitch (annotate photos)
Scannable (turn your smart device into a portable document scanner)