TAP for Internet
The Telecommunication Access Program for Internet (TAP-I) provides, at no cost to the consumer, the adaptive computer equipment and training needed for basic access to the Internet and e-mail in the home.
Who is Eligible
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 adapted keyboards, adapted pointing devices (mice), software programs which make keyboarding more efficient, and voice recognition.
Adapted keyboards include such items as large membrane keyboards that provide, among other features, a large keystroke area for someone who cannot accurately hit the small keys on a standard keyboard, or one-handed keyboards for someone who types using only one hand. Adapted pointing devices include trackballs, which allow a person to do the same activities as a mouse but through the use of one finger or a mouth stick, etc.
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 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 or learning disabilities.
Screen magnification programs magnify the information displayed on a computer screen and provide low vision speech which reads aloud what is displayed on the computer screen. Screen reader programs read the information on the computer screen and provide keyboard commands that let the user control the computer through keyboard commands. Also available in this category are screen reading programs intended for people with learning and cognitive disabilities. These programs read screen information aloud while providing features like highlighting words and phrases as they are read or the availability of clicking on a word and having the dictionary definition available.
The Telecommunications Access Program for Internet 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.
What the Program WILL NOT provide
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, electronic note takers, global positioning software (GPS), or alternative communication devices.
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 such as Word, WordPerfect, Access or Excel.
How to Apply
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 by sending an e-mail to TAP-I or by calling 1(800)647-8557.
The application form is a one-page, two-sided form with the following sections to be completed.
Section 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.
Section 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 an adaptation in the past or are currently using one in a different setting like a workplace and want to request the same equipment through TAP-I, please note that information in Section Two of the application.
Section 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, audiologists, and hearing instrument specialists. 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 and Missouri Rehabilitation Service for the Blind offices.
Once a completed and signed application is received by Missouri Assistive Technology there are several follow-up steps, which can occur depending on the information provided on the application form. The applicant will be contacted to inform them of the follow-up steps when an application is received.
Once it has been determined what adaptive equipment is needed by the applicant, that equipment is ordered and shipped directly to the their home address. The applicant then has the responsibility to register the equipment.
TAP-I program will provide upgrades to the adaptive equipment. The applicant is responsible to let Missouri Assistive Technology know if they want an upgrade.
Program surveys are sent to each recipient of adaptive equipment through the TAP-I program. It is the responsibility of each applicant to complete and return the survey to the TAP-I program. The surveys are sent via e-mail.
To contact the Telecommunication Access Program for Internet, use the information below.
If you have trouble viewing this contact Brenda, TAP-Internet Coordinator