Founded in 2013, and headquartered in Luxembourg - with locations in San Francisco, Madrid and Boston - Open Assessment Technologies (OAT) is a leading global education technology company responsible for creating the increasingly popular open source assessment platform TAO.
They required a solution to help them address a growing demand for digital assessments that could easily support improving and evolving equality legislation. SpeechStream provided an easy-to-implement solution, which helps them to make their offering more open and accessible for all.
Having seen success and swift expansion in the American, European and emerging markets, the company offers TAO across a range of sectors including K-12, Higher Education and Career Advancement - enabling organisations to freely author and deliver their own tests to millions of students across 194 countries.
Aside from allowing clients to create tests, register test-takers, deliver tests online and aggregate results into reports, TAO also supports a wide range of question types from simple multiple-choice items to complex problem solving. It’s easy to see why the platform has gained such traction in becoming the go-to solution in its niche.
Counting the likes of multinational assessment publishers, Ministries, Institutions, and Departments of Education as customers, Open Assessment Technologies quickly noted a growing demand for digital assessments that could easily support improving and evolving equality legislation.
“In recent years, assessment settings continue to migrate towards technology-rich environments. Alongside this, accessibility, equality and disability inclusion legislation is growing,” noted Isabelle Dekens, Manager of Client Services. “In line with these trends, the demand from our customers for accommodations to support learners with dyslexia, other neurodiverse conditions, print disabilities, ELL and visual impairments, has increased substantially.”
Requiring an innovative, easy-to-implement solution to make their offering more open and accessible for all, Isabella explained that Open Assessment Technologies “identified Texthelp as an ideal partner to support independent learning for diverse student populations. Their suite of software products are used by more than 25 million people worldwide, which gave us confidence in their reliability, scalability and innovation.”
In SpeechStream, Open Assessment Technologies found a solution to support independent learning and understanding for an ever increasing and diverse student population by making online assessment content more accessible.
“As global leaders in their field of assistive technology, Texthelp’s reading, writing and math support tool, SpeechStream, developed specifically for publishers and platforms of online content and assessments, was an excellent fit for our Enterprise and Premium solutions,” said Isabella.
The OAT and Texthelp Development teams worked in close collaboration to ensure seamless integration between TAO and SpeechStream. Due to the technical experience of both firms, Open Assessment Technologies have been able to deliver the best SpeechStream and TAO user experience possible.
“Texthelp provided fast and reliable technical support throughout the SpeechStream trial and integration processes, which has continued throughout the licencing period. It is of vital importance for us to deliver an exceptional and uninterrupted user experience for our platform users, and the expert support offered by Texthelp has helped to ensure continuity,” Isabella confirmed.
SpeechStream, and its innovative features like high quality Text-to-Speech with visual tracking, vocabulary support tools, dynamic translation of selections, pronunciation correction and options for reading aloud math equations, has been “invaluable in meeting the evolving needs and expectations of our customers by adapting to the changing needs of learners and teachers,” according to Isabella.
Each one of the SpeechStream tools can address the needs of test takers with reading support accommodations in a secure manner, therefore we see value in the important support features that SpeechStream has to offer. - Isabelle Dekens, Manager of Client Services
Finding themselves in a highly competitive, rapidly evolving global marketplace, Open Assessment Technologies have been able to continually improve and add value to TAO with the addition of SpeechStream, supporting the organisation to meet competitive forces head-on.
“SpeechStream reinforces our strategy for enhancing the TAO platform as a foundation for adaptive learning and personalised learning experiences, by making our assessment content more accessible. In addition, the assurance of enhanced accessibility support with SpeechStream allows our customers to focus on their core objective of developing leading assessment and content programmes,” Isabella remarked.
Since choosing SpeechStream, Open Assessment Technologies have found a variety of positive outcomes for their customers, and of course, the end users that those organisations provide an important service for.
“Adding value through the integration of SpeechStream has enabled us to increase the use of our platform as well our customers’ products and solutions, by supporting as many learners as possible, helping us to build stronger relationships with our customer base,” Isabella confirmed.
“The SpeechStream integration has further strengthened our customer relationships by demonstrating our commitment to supporting them within their external environment. This includes supporting our customers to meet their compliance obligations in an increasingly complex and regulated global landscape by building equality, diversity and disability inclusion compliance support into their platform.”
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