How the University of Connecticut Supports the Transition to College with AT


Scheduled at 3:30pm in Waverly on Wednesday, November 15 (2017).



  • Amer Latif, Vice-President of Sales, Sonocent
  • Alyssa Marinaccio, Assistive Technology Coordinator, University of Connecticut
  • Paul Brown, Global Product Manager, Texthelp

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 1-hr
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: All Levels
  • Type of session: General Conference


In this session, Alyssa Marinaccio (Assistive Technology Coordinator, University of Connecticut), Jason Carroll (Global Products Manager, Texthelp), and Dave Tucker (CEO, Sonocent) will provide an insight into how the University of Connecticut utilises AT to smooth the transition to higher education for students who struggle to write.


For students with learning disabilities that affect their ability to write, it’s not surprising that the transition to college is such a challenge. Our academic system has been designed against their physiology. Despite most instruction and discussion being spoken, success in higher education requires a high proficiency in reading and writing. From taking notes to composing assignments, without appropriate accommodations, students who struggle to write can struggle to fulfil their potential.

In this session, you’ll hear about AT designed to help students overcome the barriers posed by our text-centric education system, including: - Text-to-speech software - Audio-based note-taking software - Speech-to-text software - Word-prediction tools

Throughout the session, Assistive Technology Coordinator, Alyssa Marinaccio, will provide an inside look into how the University of Connecticut has implemented this AT and the impact it has had on transition, retention and learning independence.


  1. How AT can level the playing field for students who struggle to write
  2. Strategies for aiding transition with AT at the University of Connecticut
  3. How to design a plan for supporting transition with AT

Disability Areas


Topic Areas

Administrative/Campus Policy, Assistive Technology, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Amer Latif

Amer is the Vice-President of Sales at Sonocent, developers of award-winning, audio-centric software for note-taking and other core study skills. As part of a nationwide pilot scheme, he has driven the implementation of Sonocent software as a note-taking accommodation at over 300 colleges since the Fall Semester of 2016. Amer is passionate about the Sonocent mission to help students and professionals harness the power of spoken language to study and work better, and has spoken on this subject at major AT conference including ATIA, AHEAD, Accessing Higher Ground and Closing the Gap.

Alyssa Marinaccio

Alyssa Marinaccio is the Assistive Technology Coordinator at the Center for Students with Disabilities (CSD) at the University of Connecticut. She holds an M.Ed in Online Instructional Design as well as her Assistive Technology Professional (ATP) certification through RESNA. She also works as an AT Consultant and Trainer for ATforEd and A4E, specializing in AT for learning disabilities and print disabilities; AT in higher education; and transition. As a former student registered with disability services (LD, ADHD), Alyssa sets out to provide students with the AT services that she was never exposed to prior to and during her undergrad. Alyssa presents on assistive technology locally and nationally.

Paul Brown

Paul has been in education for 20 years as a teacher, technology coach, manager, and currently is vice president of sales for Texthelp. Paul’s team oversees the success of the Read&Write, EquatIO, Fluency Tutor, Snapverter, and WriQ family product lines. Paul is a Cleveland Browns fan for life and asks for your pity ahead of time. He and his family live in Edina, MN.