Click each question for the answer. For program overview, visit About This Program page.
What is an assistive technology?
An assistive technology is anything that helps a person achieve enhanced performance, improved function or accelerated access to information.
Some examples: hearing aids, prosthetics, text-to-speech software, closed captions, virtual reality headsets, and even the touch screen you use each day on your cell phone.
How long is the program?
The program takes two years to finish.
How many courses are included in the program?
Ten courses plus a graduate project.
How much does the program cost?
The program’s tuition is $27,951.
What is unique about this program?
Currently there are no CSU or neighboring campuses that offer a degree program of this type. Unlike traditional biomedical engineering programs, this degree is interdisciplinary in design, focusing as much on user needs as on the development of new technologies.
What are the job prospects with this degree?
This degree is attractive to many fields and industries.
Health care, in particular, is in need of experts who can design new technologies and introduce them to individuals and facilities nationwide.
Biotechnology is another industry employing assistive technology engineers. In California alone, the sector is responsible for more than $100 billion in revenue and employs over 260,000 professionals.
In military and intelligence, the need is equally vast, as the United States is looking to maintain its strategic and technological advantage.
What do potential employers say about this program?
The M.S. in Assistive Technology Engineering program was developed in collaboration with industry partners to meet their emerging workforce needs. Top executives from Boston Scientific, SoCalBio and Stellar Microelectronics agree that this degree will help to meet the growing demand for highly skilled employees in the medical device and technology manufacturing industries.
CSUN is home to the world’s largest assistive technology conference. This aligns us closely with the industry and its experts. Many of the field’s biggest names, from Google to the CIA, attend the conference and participate in exhibitions and presentations on the field’s cutting-edge technologies.
The university is also home to the Master of Science in Assistive Technology and Human Services degree, ranked #7 in 2019 for Best Online Masters in Human Services Programs by OnlineMasters.com. This provides us with a unique awareness of user needs and challenges, not to mention immediate access to top faculty and industry leaders – many who helped design this degree.
Lastly, CSUN’s Center on Disabilities is recognized internationally for its important research, training and innovations. The center also hosts the CSUN Assistive Technology Conference.
What is the CSUN Assistive Technology Conference?
The largest of its kind, the conference is an event where experts and other participants share best practices and showcase the field’s emerging technologies.
This year’s conference, which attracted thousands to Anaheim, CA, included presentations by Google, Microsoft, Hulu, Amazon, the Central Intelligence Agency, and many more.
You can see the full list of conference sessions and topics here.
Why is the military interested in assistive technology?
For two primary reasons.
On the most basic level, the military is interested in rehabilitating combat veterans. Assistive technologies, such as prosthetic limbs, enable those wounded in combat to pursue satisfying lives in the civilian world.
Beyond that, assistive technology is a core part of the military’s long-term strategic plan. Wearable electronics, such as VR headsets and night vision goggles, both fit within the military’s expanding technological horizon, as do heads-up displays, exoskeletons, drone technologies and other emerging devices and software.
What is a recent assistive technology used by military or industry?
A recent example is Microsoft’s Hololens 2. This mixed-reality headset – beyond being very cool – is designed for both commercial and military use. This device not only represents the bleeding edge of assistive technology, it’s a case study in military and industry collaboration.