Word prediction software allows the student to type one or two letters and pick from a list of words that will automatically be inserted into the writing. Placement of the word window, color, size and number of choices vary.
In this electronic age, it is no surprise that the technologies used with the writing process have surpassed all expectations. Students can use word processors and software programs to assist them with successful comple- tion of each step in the writing process. Students have many different needs for assistance with writing. Flexibility within the various tools of the programs allows the student to access as little or as much support as needed. Many of the available software programs also allow the integration of special word banks for specific writing assignments.
One of the most notable and widely used assistive technology tools is word prediction, which is especially useful for writing initial drafts. Word predic tion software allows the student to type one or two letters and pick from a list of words that will automatically be inserted into the writing. Placement of the word window, color, size and number of choices vary. Grammar tools are available with some of these programs.
The following products offer word prediction. Online examples or trial versions are available for many of these products or request a loan from the T-TAC ODU library. Visit http://ttac.odu.edu and click on the library tab.
• Premier Predictor Pro, Premier Assistive Technologies: http://www.readingmadeeasy.com
• Co-Writer, part of the SOLO package, Don Johnston, Inc.:http://www.donjohnston.com
• Read and Write Gold, Texthelp Systems, Inc.:http://www.texthelp.com
Try PixWriter for beginning and struggling writers. Students select buttons that contain the word AND a literacy support picture. Creating word and corresponding picture banks for each student is as easy as clicking the computer mouse. Pixwriter is available from http://www.slatersoftware.com
There is a new product by Crick Software, (http://www.cricksoft.com) called WriteOnline. Released in July 2008, this program is completely online. The student can even save online and access the saved document from another computer