A Review of Computer Use in Special Education

1996.第24卷第1期(Vol. 24 No. 1).pp. 177–192


A Review of Computer Use in Special Education


Stanley Koon-Chuen LEE(李冠泉)


The development of computers in the last few decades has been described as "short but significant." Computers have become a part of our culture. Some educators even claim that computers are penetrating the way we learn and communicate. With the promotion of Computer-assisted Instruction (or CAI) and Computer-assisted Learning (or CAL) in education, together with the improvement of the quality of both hardware and soft-ware, computers have been considered useful in promoting learning among children who have special educational needs (or SEN pupils). This paper sets out first to study briefly the rationale for providing special education in the Hong Kong situation. Then, it discusses the background facilitating the use of computers for special educational needs. The focus of the study is on assessing the existing factors that affect the accessibility to microcomputers for users (teachers and SEN pupils). It is hoped that this paper will stimulate readers (especially Hong Kong special educators) to further enhance the existing practice in the use of computers in meeting special educational needs. Ultimately, both students and educators will benefit because computers can effectively help learners to learn and educators to educate.