Cooperative group management software to improve communication between students with disabilities and their peers
Award last edited on: 3/1/02

Sponsored Program
Awarding Agency
Total Award Amount
Award Phase
Solicitation Topic Code

Principal Investigator
Dottie Natal

Company Information

Imagen Multimedia Corporation

205 North H Street Suite 218
Lompoc, CA 93436
   (805) 735-7576
Location: Single
Congr. District: 24
County: Santa Barbara

Phase I

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Start Date: 00/00/00    Completed: 00/00/00
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Learning, which is far more than merely an associational complex of facts, requires a synthesis of ideas into something new. Contemporary cognitive scientists agree that learning is embodied in the fluid medium of language; it is through language that we understand the world. Language development can only occur in a rich social environment, where ideas are transformed, reformed, and dynamically changed by the participants in a conversation. Youth with disabilities face particular difficulties in participating in the exchange of language within regular school settings. Classroom settings which emphasizes individual student work rather than social interaction create few opportunities for students with disabilities to learn through the exchange of language. Hardware and software which enable students to communicate are not, by themselves, an answer to this problem. The culture of the classroom must also foster inclusion, providing disabled students with a role that contributes towards group goals and thus is valued by peers. Cooperative learning activities can provide the structure needed to include these students in learning activities and increase communication between disabled students and their peers. We propose creation of software that greatly increases the likelihood that students and teachers will meet with success in implementing cooperative learning activities.

Anticipated Results/Potential Commercial Applications of Research:
:If successful, this software will facilitate the inclusion of students with disabilities into regular school settings by providing an environment in which the teacher can successfully include disabled students into cooperative groups, increasing the communication between students with disabilities and their non-disabled peers and teachers. The software will be useful for a range of students, not just the disabled students. During Phase 11 the software will be expanded and made to be more open-ended, permitting teachers and curriculum developers a framework for developing additional lessons across the curriculum and grade levels. There is a potentially wide market for such software, as it could be used at many grade levels (from second grade through college) and across a w ide range of subjects.

Phase II

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Start Date: 00/00/00    Completed: 00/00/00
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