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Assistive Software

What software is available to support my studies?  

Mind mapping software

  • Visually plan and organise your assignment or project. 
  • Can transform mind maps into a structured essay outline.
InspirationInformation and online training (link

Reading and writing software

  • Listen to text aloud to support comprehension
  • Change the background colour, to help with visual stress
  • Speech dictation, to enable speaking instead of typing
This is a free tool bar which assists with reading online:
This software can convert documents into a more accessible format. This includes text to audio files and digital Braille.
Adobe ReadAloud
This software will read the text content of PDFs into your PC headphones. Headphones are available from the Enquiry Desks at Clifford Whitworth and Allerton Learning Space.
Allows you to create your own library of references, add citations and a reference list to word documents. It is available on all open access PCs and Macs at the University.
My Study Bar (MSB)

This is a toolbar which can be used for screen masking, talking dictionary, mind mapping, text-to-speech and save text to MP3. 

Screen reading and display enhancement software

  • Make printed and electronic text accessible
CCTVMagnilink CCTV machines are available on 2nd Floor (Extension) Allerton Learning Space. CCTV is used to enlarge text or 3D materials on-screen. Printed materials, images or 3D materials are enlarged and reflected onto a monitor. The resulting image can be displayed in contrast and / or enlarged as per your requirements. Instructions on how to use are located next to the equipment.

This software can magnify and read out text. It is available in the Allerton Learning Space on a selected PC. Headphones are available from the Enquiry Desks in the library if required. 

JawsScreen reader. Headphones are available from the Enquiry Desks in the library if required.

Organisation and time-management

Google Calendar An electronic calendar that can be programmed to send email or text message reminders for events to aid time management and organisation.

My Computer, My Way

There a number of accessibility features available on devices. AbilityNet provides help to make your device easier to use:

Where can I access the software?  

The university has a range of assistive software available to all students at the library sites (

Where can I get a copy? 

Some of the software is free or part of the accessibility features available on frequently used applications and devices.  

You may be eligible to apply for funding for additional support, which can include software and equipment.  

We also have a limited number of digital voice recorders and laptops with assistive software available. If you would like to request an equipment loan, please contact Disability & Learner Support