Computers are essential tools in all academic studies. They can enhance the independence, productivity, and capabilities of people with disabilities. Computers can benefit people with low vision, blindness, speech and hearing impairments, learning disabilities, mobility, and health impairments. Each of these impairments poses challenges to accessing and using a standard computer and electronic resources.
Access to computers for patrons and students with disabilities involves two major issues: access to the computers themselves, access to electronic resources and access to the Internet.
Adaptive or accessible hardware and software can facilitate computer access for people with disabilities. Adaptive technology solutions may involve simple, readily available adjustments such as using built-in access devices on standard computers, or they may require unique combinations of software and hardware such as those needed for voice or Braille output.