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Academic Success Center

PDF Readers

Adobe Reader may be very common, but it might not be the best PDF reader for you!


These resources aim to simplify reading and viewing PDF documents, with features such as annotation tools, multimedia capabilities, and text-to-speech options.

Text to Speech Apps

These tools read all types of text documents.

Look for features such as adjustment of the pitch, volume, and rate of the reading voice; the ability to save readings as audio files; options to change the text size, color, and background for easier on-screen reading; and a built-in magnifier.

Speech to Text Apps

Quality Speech to Text apps at a reasonable price are hard to come by.  Otter is a newer app with positive reviews.  Otter claims you can "Generate rich notes for meetings, interviews, lectures, and other important voice conversations." 

Mind Maps

Mind maps are a tool used for organizing and brainstorming in a visual format. The use of digital media including photos, stickers, and audio provide an uncluttered space. Some mind map programs feature collaboration tools such as chat and sharing.

Screen Readers

Screen readers are a form of assistive technology that are especially useful for individuals who are blind or visually impaired. 

Screen readers identify (audibly, with a Braille device, etc.) everything that is displayed on your screen.

Note Taking Apps

Note-taking apps allow users to organize thoughts, check lists and to-do lists, record audio, and draft documents. Some also provide options to collect images and clip webpages. 

Highlighters/Web Annotations

Voice Recorders

If you need to make a recording, the library has an MP3 voice recorder you can check out.  There are several paid apps available.  As you decide which might be the best for you, please consider:

Where are the files stored – can they be uploaded to Dropbox or iCloud or other.

Are there time limits on how much you can record?

Can you slow down the playback speed when you are transcribing?