Accessible Math Tools for the Classroom
This page provides an overview of classroom tools for making math content more accessible with supports such as text to speech for reading math expressions aloud, handwriting recognition, sonification of graphs and more.
MathType (WIRIS) is an equation editor with support for handwiriting. MathType is compatible with Microsoft Word, and it is also available as an add-on for Google Docs. In Google Docs, MathType adds the math as an image with corresponding alternative text. MathType can also generate MathML when an expression is copied to the clipboard (this option has to be selected in the application's Copy and Cut Preferences).
EquatIO (TextHelp) allows learners to type, handwrite or dictate mathematical expressions that can be inserted into Microsoft Word and Google Docs documents. A recently added feature called Screenshot Reader can take a screenshot of an inaccessible equation and convert it into accessible math. The captured equation can be read aloud with text to speech, or it can be converted into MathML or LaTeX code that can then be pasted directly into the EquatIO equation editor for addtiional edits or inserted into the current document.
The Immersive Reader feature built into Microsoft applications such as OneNote and Word uses text to speech to read math expressions aloud. Microsoft OneNote for Windows 10 and OneNote Online also feature a Math button that allows learners to get additional support with math expressions. Learners can use OneNote's drawing tools along with the Ink feature built into some devices to handwite a math expression. After selecting the handwritten expression with the marquee tool, they can use the Math button to access options for converting the handwriting to text, solving the expression, and even seeing the steps required to arrive at the solution. Both the solution and the steps can be dragged into the OneNote document as needed. To learn more about the Math supports built into OneNote, visit the following:
- Convert and solve math equations in OneNote for Windows 10 (Microsoft Support article)
- Independent learning with math tools in OneNote (Microsoft.Edu course)
Desmos is a graphic calculator with sonification support for students with visual impairments. It works across a number of browsers and is also available as mobile apps for both iOS and Android.
Artificial production of human speech, using special software and/or hardware.View in glossary
MathML (Mathematical Markup Language)
XML-based markup language used to display mathematical content.View in glossary