Bringing learning to life through technology for children with special educational needs including Dyslexia and Dyspraxia.

Assistive Technology for Special Needs Assistants

Learn how to better use assistive technology to support students with additional learning needs.

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Helping students to learn at school involves using the right approach for each child’s individual needs. As assistive technology constantly evolves and changes, learning how to use all of the various software and apps available can feel impossible.

You need to know how to confidently use the best and most effective technology so that you can help your students reach their full potential.

There are thousands of apps and software available to students. Whatever their individual needs, “There’s an app for that”. However, knowing where to start in that sea of options can feel overwhelming.

Assistive Technology for Special Needs Assistants is an online course certified by the CPD Standards Office. It teaches SNAs to effectively use assistive technology and apps to better support students with additional learning needs.


In Assistive Technology for SNAs, you’ll learn:

  • How to overcome your hesitations about using technology

  • How to set up and use the built-in accessibility features on those devices and keep kids safe online

  • Specific recommendations for the best software and apps that help with reading, writing, maths, and organisational skills

  • How to help students get ready for big challenges like exams or their next level of education, so they can feel confident and prepared

  • How to feel confident navigating your Windows laptop or iPad

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I feel I got so much out of this course. The training is delivered in plain English. I’m looking forward to implementing some ideas in September with students.

– Fiona Sinnott

A group of devices showing the Assistive Technology SNA Course Programme

Assistive Technology for SNAs includes: 

Over 30 instructional videos on how to navigate built-in accessibility features and tutorials for specific apps and software.

Printable cheatsheets for navigating the various features of your devices and for keeping students safe on the internet.

Links to our recommendations for the very best apps and software for reading, writing and maths (we've done the research for you!)

An official Certificate of Completion from the CPD Standards Office to show that you've successfully completed the training.


Get started with Assistive Tech now!

Enrollment closes in:


Whether you’re supporting students in primary or secondary school, we’ve got your back. Choose the version of the course that applies to you.



Assistive Technology for Primary School SNAs



Assistive Technology for Secondary School SNAs



Get a 25% discount when purchasing for 4 or more!


This course will start on the 7th of October.

After enrolling, you’ll be sent information on how to access the course. The course is self-paced, however we are also going to support you for 6 weeks, where we will answer any queries you might have.

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I recently did an assistive technology course with UrAbility and it was the best course I’ve been to in a very long time. I have used the information and resources to help both me and the children I work with and we are all benefiting from it. I would recommend UrAbility to everyone!

– Brenda Kerins


Inside the Curriculum


Getting to know your Devices

You’ll learn your way around your Windows laptop or iPad, explore the accessibility features that come built right into those devices, and learn how to keep your students safe while they use the internet.

Technology for Reading

We’ll cover assistive technology, including software, apps and browser extensions that are available for the iPad and Windows laptops to help students with reading challenges.

Reading with a Scanning Pen

You’ll be introduced you to the Scanning Pen, and you’ll learn how this tool can be life changing to students that struggle with reading. No software required!

Accessing Reading Materials

You’ll learn how the process works for applying for and accessing digital copies of reading materials for students in Ireland.

Technology for Writing

We’ll cover assistive technology, including software, apps and browser extensions that are available for the iPad and Windows laptops to help students with writing challenges.

Technology for Maths

We’ll cover assistive technology, including software, apps and browser extensions that are available for the iPad and Windows laptops to help students with maths.

Study Skills and Preparing for the Next Step

Whether your primary school student is getting ready for secondary, or your secondary school student is getting ready for exams, we’ll cover what they need to know and do to prepare for these important transitions.

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James appears to have an endless supply of knowledge and experience in the AT area. He has a natural ability and willingness to share this information with everyone!

– Lorraine Dineen


See how UrAbility has been bringing this training LIVE to SNAs across Ireland and the UK.


But we know that it’s not possible for every SNA to join us for these live trainings. That’s why we’ve created this online course that you can take from anywhere, so you can learn everything you need to help your students get started with assistive technology!




Assistive Technology for SNAs is for you if:

  • You’re a primary or secondary school SNA assigned to one or more students

  • Technology feels scary or overwhelming to you. There’s just too much to learn!

  • Your students struggle with reading, writing or maths, or have physical challenges that prevent them reaching their full potential 

  • You simply don’t have the time to research and test all of the assistive technology options in order to choose the best ones

  • You’d love to feel informed and confident about using the technology available to your students


I’m James Northridge, the Founder of UrAbility.


At UrAbility, we use our expertise to leverage technology to help students learn and thrive, whatever their abilities and whatever their goals. Special Needs Assistants are close to our hearts because they’re on the front lines of education, and we want them to have all of the information they need to help their students succeed with technology.

Having Dyslexia and ADHD, I very much understand the learning challenges that face students. After struggling throughout school due to my own learning challenges and dropping out of University, a second chance at college came my way and I was able to turn it around, earning a first-class honours degree from University College Cork and a Masters in Disabilities Studies from University College Dublin.

Since then, I’ve gone on to complete a Marie Curie Fellowship at UMass Medical School in Boston, and I proudly won Young Researcher of the Year at the International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs (ICCHP) in Austria.

I’ve trained hundreds of SNAs and families across Europe and the United States to use technology to help kids learn more effectively. I hope you’ll join me for this course!


Frequently Asked Questions about Assistive Technology for SNAs

How does an online course work, what do I need to do?

We provide you with the content, which includes video demonstrations, written materials, images and handouts. You watch the videos and review the materials on your laptop, tablet or smartphone and then reflect on how you may use that technology in your school. We will support you along the way, with our online office hours, private Facebook group and email support.

How long is the course and how much effort is required?

This course is self-paced, however we will be supporting you over a 6 week period, from the 7th of October. We would expect that you should be able to cover the materials in that timeframe. There are 10 sections and each section is made up of videos, with some extra content (text, links and handouts).

In total this course should take up 20 hours of learning, made up of our online materials, our weekly office hours and your reflection exercises.

With the reflection, we ask you to consider how you might use the technology covered within your school or with the children you support. This is not an assignment, more so, we expect you to partake and engage with the content during the course.

How and when will I receive my certificate?

Once you have completed up to 85% of the course we will issue a certificate of compliance from the CPD Standards Office. The certificates will be issued in early November via the email you registered with and will be in PDF format.

My student has specific difficulties with _______. Will this course help me support them?

This course is designed for SNAs who work with students who have difficulties with reading, writing, maths and organisational skills, and we cover a wide range of apps and software that will be helpful to students with additional learning needs.

If you're still unsure, send me an email at We’re happy to help.

My student has Autism. Will this course help me support them?

While much of this course will also be useful to students with Autism, it is not specifically centered on Autism. Feel free to reach out to us and tell us about your situation, and we’ll give you our honest opinion about whether this course will help.

What’s the difference between the Primary and Secondary School courses?

Many of the apps and technology we cover are the same in both versions, but there are some differences:

The Primary School version of the course includes apps, software, and technology that are more suitable for primary school students, as well as information about helping your student learn basic study skills to get ready for the transition to Secondary education.

The Secondary School version of the course includes apps and software that are more suitable for secondary school students, as well as more in-depth information about helping your student build the independent study skills they’ll need in secondary and helping them to prepare for state exams.

My student has an Android, Mac or other type of device. Will this help?

This course only focuses on the iPad using the iOS 12 [Apple], iPadOS operating system and on laptops using Windows 10 (Microsoft). It does not cover other brands of devices.

What do I need to have to take part in this course?

This course can be taken on any device that has internet access, including smartphones, tablets and desktop computers. However, the material covered inside the course specifically addresses the iPad (iOS 12), iPadOS* and Windows 10 laptops.

What if I need one to one technical support?

This course doesn't include one-on-one technical training, but we'll be hosting regular Facebook Live Q&A sessions, where you can ask all of your questions and we'll answer them live. This is also a great opportunity to learn from what other SNAs may be struggling with!

How long do I have access to the course??

After enrolling, you have unlimited access for the lifetime of the course - across any and all devices you own, for as long as we continue to run the course.

How can I talk to my school principal about investing in this course?

We know that SNAs often have to communicate with their principal or board of management who makes purchasing decisions, so we’ve created this email template you can use to talk to them about Assistive Technology for SNAs. Copy and paste it into your email program, personalize it, and send away!

What apps and software are covered in this course?

Here’s the full curriculum for the Primary School version of the course, and here’s the curriculum for the Secondary School version.

Still have questions? Get in touch at!