The first session of the Fall semester opened with a presentation from the folks at the Student Success Center  Karen Hemker and Lisa Thorsell  introduced  Read & Write for Google, a new add-on for Google that was developed to “boost reading and writing confidence for every student.” Available on the Chrome browser, the add-on provides a wide array of tools including text to speech, speech to text, a talking dictionary, fact finder, highlighters, translator, vocabulary builder, and more. 

A related app, Snapverter, was also introduced.  With this tool faculty can easily convert scanned documents to an accessible format for their students.  It recognizes text from worksheets, handouts, book pages, photocopies, and other classroom materials and stores them in the Snapverter folder in Google Drive.

The session ended with participants adding these free tools to their own laptops or other devices ably assisted by Hemker and Thorsell.