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University of Connecticut Assistive Technology Oral History Project

Don Johnston

CEO - Don Johnston, Inc.

Date: October 18, 2007

Snippet 1: "How did you get into the disability field?" (2:57)

Snippet 2: "Tell me about the transition we're in today." (2:01)

Download: Full Transcript

Don shares the story of his professional journey beginning with the valuable insights he gained about students’ behavior and learning issues in his alternative school in the early 70’s. He started his organization when a “whole new world was opening with computers in education,” developing products so that students with physical disabilities could access the computer.

Understanding that learning issues often interfered with their success, he developed literacy products, such as Co: Writer, which is now 15 years old.

He talks about the transition we are experiencing as AT professionals provide educational support, not just technology support, becoming an integral part of intervention teams and providing solutions before children fail. As he says, “It’s really important that we make the technology just a component of what we do when we educate students.”