Last Updated: Thursday, June 27, 2019

CALL Scotland: The use of inclusive digital technologies to raise attainment for learners who require additional support (Additional Support Needs)

What is this?

​​​​​​​CALL Scotland is a support service funded primarily by the Scottish Government to help children and young people across Scotland to overcome disability and barriers to learning.

Their service includes:

  • Pupil Assessment and Support
  • Professional Learning
  • Specialist Information and Expert Advice
  • Assistive Technology Loans and Technical Support
  • Knowledge Transfer, Research and Development
  • Strategic Leadership

​The use of Assistive Technology is key to raising attainment for learners who require additional support.

Essential for Some, Good for All:​ Leading for all which offers guidance in supporting learners with additional support needs, states that:

'The use of assistive technology to support the needs of special education students has been a revelation and has begun a small revolution in student achievement, so that many students are now able to access, develop and display what they know in ways that have never been possible for them before.

Assistive technologies can increase participation, enhance inclusion, develop positive identity and self-confidence and raise achievement in the community of students with special educational needs. They can also enhance, extend and engage learning among all students.
(Hargreaves, A. & Braun, H. (2012) p.53).​

Who is this for?

​Managers, Teachers, Support for Learning staff, classroom assistants, professionals working with learners who require additional support due to literacy/numeracy difficulties, physical, communication or sensory ​impairment.​

​​How to use this learning and assessment resource to improve practice

The CALL Scotland website provides a wide range of information and advice about how to support learners with additional support needs using inclusive digital technologies for either communication or to access the curriculum.

For example:

Symbols for All which provides printable PDFs of symbolised curricular resources for inclusive learning and teaching. These are designed to support the introduction of picture symbols in everyday school activities and a core 'starter' set is provided, free of charge.

Equipment Bank Loans of equipment are made to allow for extended assessment at home, school or work, and to enable people to evaluate a device or system.

Webinars A fortnightly programme of free practical and relevant 20 minute webinars on inclusive digital technologies.

It is worth checking if your local authority has a service level agreement with CALL Scotland which may allow you to access reduced day rates for specialist services such as:

  • Professional Learning and In-Service days delivered in your location. These will provide the skills, knowledge, rationale and understanding of how technologies can be used to support a wide range of pupils with Additional Support Needs and disabilities.
  • Specialist assessment and support of pupils with complex additional support needs who require technology to access the curriculum and/or Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC).

Reflective questions:

  • Do you know how technologies can support learners with Additional Support needs?
  • Are you confident in your own abilities using technology to help raise attainment?
  • Do you embed technology in your classroom to ensure you provide a fully inclusive learning environment?
  • Do your computers/ devices in school meet the Scottish Government guidance on computer accessibility which is required for some pupils to access learning effectively and independently?