Previous ProposalReturn to ScheduleNext Proposal

Using CAR with Nontraditional Students: A Roadmap

Proposal No: 2724

Bios & Handouts


  • Wendy Holden, Director of Disability Services, Central Washington University
  • Jenna Atkinsin, Coordinator of Assistive Technology , Utah Valley University

Disability Area:          

Topic Area:                  

Length of Session (in hours): 1-hrFormat: Lecture Expertise Level: BeginnerType of session: Not provided

Summary of Session

DS professionals from CWU and UVU discuss how the Central Access Reader can benefit nontraditional students.


The Central Access Reader is a free, text to speech program that reads Microsoft Word Documents. For many individuals on campus, CAR is their first introduction to tts technology. Auditory learners can use the reader to reinforce what they are reading and individuals who have difficulty staying focused can use the highlighting features to help maintain their attention. Determining the appropriate format for materials should be based on the student’s disability, the nature of the content and the way that the materials will be used. We will discuss how CAR has been used to provide access to non-traditional students who are unfamiliar with assistive technology. DS providers from Utah Valley University and Central Washington University will discuss their experiences using CAR with non-traditional students, Learn how we introduce CAR to our students and what the response has been.


  1. CAR is an easy way to introduce technology to students
  2. CAR can benefit students who do not qualify for accommodations
  3. CAR meets the unique needs of nontraditional students

Speaker Bio(s)

Wendy Holden

to be provided

Jenna Atkinsin

Marshall Sunnes is Coordinator of Central Access, Central Washington University’s (CWU) accessible and fee-for-service alternative media processing lab. Sunnes started working for Central Access as a student, and now works as a full-time employee. Sunnes believes that accessible media can be both high quality and economical. Sunnes has started free software initiatives like the Central Access Reader and CAR Check. These free resources engage anyone to make documents accessible, without a background in disability services or accessibility, and to have access to quality TTS software that can support a variety of needs. He is confident that accessibility can be a collective mission for all.