SOURCE: Don Johnston Incorporated

Don Johnston Incorporated

September 22, 2014 13:04 ET

Don Johnston Releases Co:Writer Universal -- Word Prediction on iPad, Desktop, and Chromebooks

VOLO, IL--(Marketwired - September 22, 2014) - Don Johnston Incorporated today announced Co:Writer® Universala new version of their popular writing accommodation line used in over 5,000 districts. Co:Writer Universal integrates word prediction across the most popular writing devices -- Chromebooks, iPads, as well as Mac and Windows desktop computers.

"We get letters from students who are writing for the first time with the help of Co:Writer," said Ben Johnston, Director of Marketing for Don Johnston Incorporated. "It has a magical way of helping them turn their ideas into words and overcome writing challenges. With Co:Writer Universal, they'll have access to their favorite writing tool on their favorite devices at school and at home."

The release comes at a time when schools are adopting new rigorous curriculum standards with increased writing expectations. Students are expected to write opinions, compare and contrast essays, and sequences with academic vocabulary. Students in special education who struggle with writing are not exempt from these high expectations. Co:Writer uses word prediction to help these students improve word recall while correcting spelling and grammar as they write.

With new high-stakes state assessments on the horizon, principals, assistive technology specialists, and instructional technology coordinators are looking for ways to accommodate writing difficulties. Technology is being considered to help students achieve the standards and perform on the assessment. Many states have already adopted word prediction as a permissible testing accommodation including Texas, Virginia, and states in the PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) Common Core testing consortium. For these states, Co:Writer Universal features can be configured to meet testing accommodation requirements.

School districts will find new Co:Writer supports that help students bring academic vocabulary into their writings. Over four million Topic Dictionaries can be made instantly and cover all topics required by the new standards. Additionally, Co:Writer will automatically "scrape" open email contents and web pages for unique vocabulary, names, and places. These automatically integrate into Co:Writer's Topic Dictionaries and are made available to students in real time as they write.

"I think it's a positive move to bring writing back in focus," said Ruth Ziolkowski, President of Don Johnston Incorporated. "Writing helps us synthesize and comprehend ideas and then share them. But, students with writing challenges like dyslexia and dysgraphia often miss out. They have rich thoughts, but can't turn them into the right words. Co:Writer Universal helps these students participate, and by working on any device they write with, they'll have more opportunities to write and express themselves than ever before."

Co:Writer Universal can be previewed in a short video, released by Don Johnston.

Co:Writer Universal is available for order immediately. K-12 school districts can purchase the accommodation school-wide for a yearly cost, which includes home access.

Resource Links:

To learn more about Co:Writer® Universal, please visit: http://donjohnston.com/cowriter/

To watch a preview of Co:Writer Universal, please visit: http://vimeo.com/donjohnstoninc/cowriter-universal-demo

To learn more about how Co:Writer Universal works between platforms, please visit: http://donjohnston.com/wp-content/downloads/using/cowriter_universal_platform_comparison_chart.pdf

About Don Johnston Incorporated

Don Johnston (http://donjohnston.com) develops accessible reading and writing technologies to support K-12 and postsecondary students with cognitive, physical, and learning disabilities. Since 1980, the special education company has partnered with literacy experts, AT specialists, SLPs, OTs, special education teachers, university researchers and DSS coordinators to improve access to learning and to increase reading and writing independence. Tens of thousands of students with dyslexia, autism, dysgraphia, down-syndrome and diverse learning challenges use our software and hardware devices to accommodate their learning needs in schools, the workforce and at home. Find us on Twitter and Facebook.

Image Available: http://www.marketwire.com/library/MwGo/2014/9/19/11G022178/Images/CoWriter-Universal-Devices-422150163503.jpg
Image Available: http://www.marketwire.com/library/MwGo/2014/9/19/11G022178/Images/Girl_CoWriter_app-1042848209327.jpg

Contact Information