As the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the digital transformation and accentuated the digital divide, and it also highlighted another digital gap: the one experienced by autistic people with high support needs in VET contexts. This demonstrated the need for making online and virtual educational services available and accessible to autistic people.

In order for autistic people, their families and education professionals to be digitally ready, it requires the availability of accessible digital technologies that can facilitate training, learning and personal development for people in need of high level of support, as well as specialised training for education professionals.

Addressing the digital gap for autistic people in need of a high level of support

IDEAL (Inclusive Digital Education for Autistic People Learning) is an Erasmus+ project launched to address the lack of accessible online tools, trained professionals and educational methodologies adapted to autistic people in need of a high level of support. The project aims to facilitate autonomous equal access to digital technologies to guarantee the continuity of autistic people education and their social and personal development.

Concretely, IDEAL has three practical objectives that will guide the development of the project:

  • Digital platform: To develop a Learning Management System (LMS) following accessibility requirements for autistic people (learners, VET students, people with different support needs, etc.)
  • Autism accessibility evaluation: To evaluate different digital tools according to their usefulness for autistic students following a person-centered approach
  • Training: To deliver a methodology for digital training

IDEAL brings together 7 partners:  University of Burgos (Spain), Fundación Miradas (Spain), Fondacija hiljadu želja (Serbia), FPDA – Portuguese Federation for Autism (Portugal), Tady to mám rád (Czech Republic), Abadía Tecnológica (Spain) and Autism-Europe (Belgium).

A platform with accessible digital tools for autistic people

The IDEAL project will create an online platform with accessible digital tools (such as Apps and other digital resources) for autistic people, their support networks and professionals. The platform will be available in 6 European languages and will focus on the core areas of: communication, education, social skills, health management, functional skills and entertainment.

The goals of the platform are to be:

  • Accessible: ensure the platform is accessible for all autistic users
  • Incusive: provide training (tutorials, guides) for autistic people with higher support needs to access digital tools
  • Supportive: support educator, teachers, VET trainers, therapists, and other professionals of the autism sector in their use and access to digital tools
  • Empowering: develop a useful information resource for autistic people and their families to learn and choose the digital tools best suited for them

 

 

Source: European Digital Skills & Jobs Platform

 

 

Digital technology / specialisation

  • Digital skills

Digital skill level

  • Basic
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

Geographic Scope - Country

  • European Union

Type of initiative

EU institutional initiative

Target audience

  • Digital skills for the labour force.
  • Digital skills for ICT professionals and other digital experts.
  • Digital skills in education.

Target language

  • English
  • Italian
  • Spanish

Methodology

Digital platform and specialised training

Main document - File for download

Supporting documents

Target group

  • Persons requiring employment retraining
  • Persons who have completed tertiary education (EQF 7)
  • Persons with 0-3 years work experience
  • Persons who have completed tertiary education (EQF 8)
  • Persons with 3-10 years work experience
  • Persons with 10+ years work experience

Skills resource type

Other training material

Organization