Politecnico di Milano (ITALY)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2015 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Pages: 6814-6824
ISBN: 978-84-606-5763-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 9th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2015
Location: Madrid, Spain
At Politecnico di Milano, the MultiChancePoliTeam (MCPT) uses innovative ICT solutions to provide services to students with Disabilities and Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD). This paper describes results obtained working for ten years with students with different diagnosis on the SpLD spectrum. Such results are discussed with respect to chosen pathway, innovative ICT solutions, and main difficulties students faced during the course of study.
We also presents the results of the SpLD students profiling activity, realized during 2012 and 2013 using our ICF* model (a customized version of the WHO ICF). Data we collected provided a clear description of our SpLD students, also validating the ICF* approach.

During the survey, 142 subjects were contacted (122 actual students, 20 graduated ex-students); in particular, 109 profiles were collected (94 from students, 15 from ex-students), while 28 subjects did not answer (14 refused, 8 did not respect the deadline, 6 leaved Politecnico during the project).
Among the 94 students we contacted, 37 used the on-line form while 57 chose to compile the questionnaire during a meeting with the MCPT psychologist. All the 15 ex-students used the on-line form.
Among the 109 subjects who sent their profiles, 72 had a dyslexia diagnosis, 2 a dysgraphia diagnosis, and 35 a mixed diagnosis

Innovative solutions:
The results of the survey were also used to personalize some innovative ICT pedagogical solutions, developed by MCPT.

PoliSpell: a spellchecker/predictor, specific for subjects with SpLD. Starting from a common Error Model, the system collects the user behavior and adapts corrections and predictions performing an online-learning procedure. The interface aims at reducing interaction with the user, and features manual and automatic modes. Switch between such modes is automatic, taking into account the accuracy of the correction/prediction.

SPARTA2: a tool supporting the authoring of accessible texts. SPARTA2 makes a distinction between readability (evaluation about the structure of sentences) and understandability (the lexical aspects). Moreover, SPARTA2 is able to detect and report potential readability issues, analyzing the structure and the lexicon of the sentences and generating warnings and possible solutions.

PoliNotes: a note-taking environment, integrating teacher-generated contents and student-generated notes. PoliNotesTeacher installs as an extension of PowerPoint and, whenever the teacher is showing a new slide in the presentation, extracts objects (text, list items, equations, images, etc.) and sends them to students’ tablets. PoliNotesStudent, which runs on students’ tablets, receives such objects and shows them on the electronic sheet; objects are pre-arranged on the sheet, but students can move and edit each of them; moreover, students can add their own drawings, or hand-written notes, freely mixing slide-based and pen-based contents.

KEaKI: a tool able to generate a summary and a mental map of a text. It is based on ontologies, describing a specific domain (in terms of roles and actions among them), and a verbal frame database, decorated with thematic roles (matching the ones defined into the ontology).
Specific Lerning Difficulties, WHO ICF.