There are four qualifications for the Telecommunications Access Program for Internet. The applicant must: (1) be a Missouri resident; (2) have an annual household income under $60,000 for two people; with $5,000 being added for each additional dependent; (3) have a computer in their home; and, (4) have internet access.

The types of adaptive computer equipment provided through the program are generally divided into two large categories – computer input adaptations and computer output adaptations.

Input adaptations are intended for people who cannot use standard keyboards and/or pointing devices due to a disability. Included in this category are alternative keyboards, alternative pointing devices (mice), software programs which make keyboarding more efficient, and voice recognition.

Alternative keyboards may include ergonomic keyboards, large-print keyboards, onscreen keyboards, one-handed keyboards, or chording keyboards. Alternative pointing devices include trackballs, joystick mouse, head-pointing mouse, or eye gaze mouse, and similar devices that replace a traditional mouse.

Adaptive software programs include programs that allow a user to use pictures to write messages or word prediction software that lessens the number of keystrokes needed to write words. Voice recognition programs, such as Dragon, allow a consumer to use their voice to control computer commands and to write documents.

Computer output adaptations are intended for people who cannot use visually presented information. Included in this category are screen magnification and screen reader programs for people with visual impairments and software with reading and writing assistance for people with learning disabilities.

The Telecommunications Access Program for Internet (TAP-I) will also provide consumer support to applicants in determining the adaptive computer equipment needed for Internet access and training on how to use the adaptive equipment to access the Internet and e-mail.

The TAP-I program will not provide computers nor will it provide computer related equipment not necessary and/or intended for Internet access. The program will not provide Braille embossers (printers), electronic notetakers, global positioning software (GPS), or speech generating devices (SGDs).

The program will not provide training on learning how to keyboard nor will it provide training on how to use your adaptive equipment with applications that are not related to Internet or e-mail access.

To apply for the TAP-I program you must complete a  TAP-I application WORD form or  TAP-I application PDF form which can be downloaded and printed or send an e-mail requesting the application to  TAP-I or by calling 816-655-6700.

The application form is a one-page, two-sided form with the following sections to be completed.

Part One asks for demographic information such as the applicant’s name, address, birth date, etc. This section also asks the applicant to indicate through yes or no check boxes if they meet the program’s four qualifications.

Part Two asks the applicant to indicate if they know what adaptive equipment they want to request through the program or if they will need assistance selecting the equipment they will request through the program. If you have used a computer assistive technology in the past or are currently using it in a different setting like a workplace and want to request the same equipment through TAP-I, please note that information in Part Two of the application.

Part Three asks the applicant to certify their disability. Based on the original legislation, there are several groups of people who can sign this section of the application including licensed physicians, speech pathologists, and audiologists. Agents approved by Missouri Assistive Technology can also sign this section. Agencies who have been approved by Missouri Assistive Technology include representatives from the Centers for Independent Living, Missouri Rehabilitation Service for the Blind offices, Department of Mental Health approved providers, Occupational Therapists, and Missouri Special Education Directors.

Once a completed and signed application is received by Missouri Assistive Technology and it has been determined what adaptive equipment is needed by the applicant, that equipment is ordered and shipped directly to their home address.

TAP-I program will provide software upgrades to the adaptive equipment, if the applicant remains eligible.  The applicant is responsible to contact Missouri Assistive Technology when an upgrade is available.

Program participants are expected to complete and return TAP-I program surveys which are sent via email.

Contact Brenda, TAP-Internet Coordinator: