Objects and text may be enlarged for easier viewing by the use of portable or desktop electronic video magnification, also known as closed-circuit television (CCTV), and to a lesser extent by hand-held illuminated or classic magnifiers. Magnification software, with or without speech, is available for work done on computer.
Desktop CCTVs tend to be found in libraries and resource centres. They may have their own monitor (CRT or TFT), or be attached to a computer or television. They are used for examining objects closely, finding sections in books prior to scanning text for reading with speech output, working through whole texts or writing short notes. They usually magnify to much higher levels than hand-held devices do.
Portable CCTVs and hand-held magnifiers are convenient in other study locations and tend to be owned by the individual student. They vary from a monocular used to read the board to a dome magnifier to inspect a map.
Magnification software loads at the start of work on a computer and is used for all aspects of navigation, word processing and web browsing. The programs can be used in an e-learning situation and for online communication.
Do not assume that the greatest magnifications give the most benefit; remember that the higher the magnification the less can be seen in one view.
It is important to allow extra time to complete work as high levels of magnification mean only a little is seen at a time. It can also be very tiring to constantly view objects using a magnifier, so remember to build in time for breaks.
The shapes, colour and outlines in complex pictures may become blurred or pixelated at magnification, so you might need to make an alternative version available.
Good lighting is essential for close work.
Magnification software settings for size, colour and contrast levels, as well as mouse cursor and pointer size, may be adjusted to suit personal preferences. If the software is being made available over a network then you should ensure that this functionality is still available to individuals.