• February 25, 2010

IlyazIlyaz has come a long way since he started his high school career. Iona, his SEA, and Kathryn his vision teacher can be very pleased!

Having started his technical journey with a computer that he found too complex to navigate, and a love of speech output that interfered with his work, this young man was challenged by autism, blindness and his technology. Working with his school team and SET-BC, Ilyaz has begun down a new path toward independence, using his laptop as a visual display and a Pac Mate as his data storage system and Braille display. Now he is able to independently create and save files, as well as emboss his work.

The Pac Mate is used with the Braille display as visual feedback because Ilyaz still perseverates on the speech output. He readily admits that he likes to hear it talk, and has come to understand that the speech interferes with his work production.

Challenges that lie ahead for this team include, learning more about the use of the Pac Mate and creating structures to help Ilyaz remember commands and processes. Ilayz’s personal challenge will be using what he learned today when he starts his work tomorrow. Repetition to solidify his knowledge and generalization to similar situations is what the team is hoping for. Further down on the list of challenges will be teaching Ilyaz to use the calculator, email program and calendar.

His vision teacher has been encouraged to see Ilyaz enjoying the use of the Pac Mate so much and everyone is pleased to know that Ilyaz himself feels it has made a big difference in his life. Feeling confident and motivated to use his equipment will ultimately help Ilyaz be successful, and this is what the provision of technology is all about!

Here’s what Ilyaz had to say about his Pac Mate:

“Hi. My name is Ilyaz. I am now 15 years old. I live in Maple Ridge. I use a special piece of equipment called a Pac Mate. A Pac Mate is a very special piece of equipment to me because I can take it home and to school every day. I can do my homework and school work much easier and much faster. I can also take my Pac Mate with me to all my classes with me every day at school. Two other interesting things I can do with my Pac Mate is emboss my work which means put it into Braille and I can also print out my work into print. When I edit my work I can use the spell checker or back space. When I save my files I can easily open and close them. It is way better than a perkins brailler or a laptop. The Pac Mate is my favourite piece of equipment I have ever used. Thank you very very much for this wonderful Pac Mate. And a very special thank you to you Iona for getting me the Pac Mate. I love it.”

To learn more about the technology used in this SETstory, search for it by name in learningSET.