Offline tools

This page focuses on technologies for education that do not necessarily have an online component. Many of these have a key role to play in ‘classroom’ teaching, and some can really make a difference to inclusivity and accessibility. Examples include interactive whiteboards, ‘remote’ keyboard and mouse, voting systems.

Follow the links below for more information:-

click here for whiteboards
click here for remote mouse keyboard
click here for voting systems
click here for digital cameras
click here for mind-mapping
click here for MS Office

click here for JISC Access Apps

Whiteboards provide scope for a wide range of interactive, visual activities. Note, however, that it is the software that is important, and students can interact with a board using a ‘remote’ mouse and keyboard (see below). The video below (from Oxford University Press) gives some good introductory tips, and whiteboard companies such as Smart and Promethean have web-sites with good resources & help eg. Smart Teacher’s Hub


remote mouse keyboard
A ‘remote’ mouse and keyboard with range around 10m can provide opportunities for whole-class engagment in computer-based activities. Watch the video for more information

voting systems
Voting systems (also known as ‘clickers’, ‘audience response systems’ etc) provide a method of introducing interactive formative assessment that is a lot of fun and also has the option of allowing students to answer anonymously. Very good for large group situations. There are many different voting systems available eg. Quizdom, Turning Point, CPS. Most involve producing question using Power-Point. The video below gives some ideas about how these systems can be used.

digital cameras
digital cameras (or mobile phones) with USB connectors provide opportunities to capture visual evidence in a wide range of educational contexts web-link

Mind-mapping software allows clear, reproducable mind-maps to be created easily. Some software is commercial (eg. Mind Genius), some is free to use, either online (eg. Mindmeister) or downloadable (eg. Freemind), in which case it is not necessary to be connected to the Internet.
MS Office
Microsoft Office applications – such as ‘Word’ and Power-Point – have many applications in teaching. Good instructions for working through some of these (and other application) can be be found from eGuides. Ideas for use of images in Power-point can also be obtained from the video.

JISC Access Apps
AccessApps is an initiative developed by the Scottish JISC Regional Support Centres in cooperation with JISC TechDis. It consists of over 50 open source and freeware assistive technology applications which can be entirely used from a USB stick on a Windows computer (here is a full list of applications on offer). Support for writing, reading and planning is included, and solutions for visual and mobility difficulties. More information is available at: