Re-imagining the lecture note taking experience to make note taking accessible for all

Handouts Media

Presented at 11:15am in Cotton Creek II on Wednesday, November 20, 2019.



  • Paul Davis, Product Design Lead , Sonocent

Session Details

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


Discover how user research and work within the accessibility community helped to shape Sonocent's latest cloud-based note taking tool. Paul gives you exclusive access to the new app and how it scaffolds the note-taking process for your students. Explore how usability and accessibility best practice ultimately translates to 'good design' for all.


Note-taking is a fundamental skill for learning.

That's why students encounter the note taker’s dilemma: take comprehensive notes but miss out in the moment or stay engaged and forget what was said?

But Sonocent believes that no student should need to compromise on their learning potential.

After years of R&D, the team behind Audio Notetaker has created a new cloud-based app for every student’s note-taking needs. With ease of use at its heart, it is designed to allow students to capture, review and refine their lectures notes at their own pace.

In this session, Paul shares how user research and work within the accessibility community helped to shape Sonocent's vision. Together we explore how inclusive design principles can be used to align teams around a common goal of delivering an effective, efficient and satisfying user experience.

See the app in action as it scaffolds the note-taking process, revealing how browser extensions can be used to customize students’ experience.


  1. We explore how user research and the accessibility community should inform the development of EdTech.
  2. We discuss how usability and accessibility best practices can translate to 'good design' for all users.
  3. We reveal how Sonocent approached inclusive design principles to align teams around a common goal.

Disability Areas

Cognitive/Learning, Vision

Topic Areas

Assistive Technology, Teaching about Accessibility in Curriculum, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Paul Davis

Paul has over 18 years’ experience designing software applications for a wide range of clients including the BBC, NHS, City and Guilds, British Council, AAT, AQA, LearnDirect and the Driving Standards Agency. Paul has a track record of establishing user-centred techniques and processes within software organizations, including wireframes, interactive prototypes, user testing, and contextual inquiries.

At Sonocent, Paul and his team focus on designing learning and note-taking technology for all students, including those with disabilities. As Product Design Lead, Paul is responsible for ensuring product designs meet user needs, provide a delightful user experience and achieve business objectives. Paul's current focus is leading the design of Sonocent's latest cloud-based note-taking app.

Achievements in previous roles

- Design lead for the Surpass Assessment Platform which has been used to create, manage and deliver over 10 million assessments in more than 100 countries.

- Designed and managed the production of an accessible online test delivery application which was awarded ‘Accredited Plus’, the highest level of accessibility accreditation awarded by the UK’s leading disability charity AbilityNet.

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