Acquiring Audio AEM

Audio format are human-voice recordings and computer synthesized Text-to-Speech (TTS). However, for the purpose of acquiring Audio Accessible Educational Materials – (AEM), we will be providing information about human-voice recorded content only. If the student can use TTS, please see the acquisition information about Digit Text as this content can be converted with text-to-speech software.

The following are sources for acquiring human-voice recorded Audio AEM:

Learning Ally

Learning Ally logoLearning Ally External link (formerly Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic – RFB&D) provides human-narrated textbooks, as well as thousands of other books for individuals with qualifying print disabilities. Learning Ally is the only resource for school textbooks in human-recorded Audio format.

Acquisition of AIM from Learning Ally requires a School Membership which is fee-based; individual memberships for qualified students are free. Learning Ally has also been designated by Maine as a NIMAC Authorized User.

Visit the Membership Section of the Learning Ally website External link to learn more about school membership and how to acquire AEM in Audio format.

Maine State Library Service

Maine State Library in AugustaThe Maine State Library Service’s Talking Books Program is a loan service provides audiobooks for individuals with qualifying print disabilities. Patrons have the choice of audiobooks in cassette or digital format. Membership is at no cost to Maine residents.

The Maine State Library is a NIMAC Authorized User. Please contact the Library for more information about this service.

For assistance, please contact Chris Boynton, Outreach/Special Services Coordinator by e-mail at or by calling 207-287-5653 or 1-800-762-7106

Books Aloud, Inc.

Books Aloud, Inc. External link hosts a Reading by Listening loan service for individuals with qualifying print disabilities. Audiobooks are shipped via standard cassette tape. Membership is free.

Notes and other alternatives

Book Publishers:

Some publishers of instructional materials are now making their materials available in specialized formats. There is no central clearinghouse listing who these publishers are. Schools are encouraged to ask sales staff from these companies for lists of AEM that they can purchase.

If a publisher has a specialized format of a copyrighted material, such as a textbook or contemporary novel, available for sale, it can be purchased and used by any student. That is, it doesn’t have to be reserved for the sole use of a student with a print disability.

Here is a list of some resources:

Volunteer’s Voice Recording

A school volunteer may make a high-quality voice recording of copyrighted materials for students with qualifying print disabilities.  If a material is in the Public Domain, licensed under Creative Commons, or teacher-created, a voice recording can be made available to all students.

The Maine State Library has a recording booth available for voice recorders. The process of creating a quality recording can be lengthy, therefore plenty of time will need to be devoted to this task. For more information, please contact Chris Boynton, Outreach/Special Services Coordinator at or 207-287-5653 or 1-800-762-7106.

Free Online Collections Available for Use by All Students

The following on-line resources may be able to provide free online books in Audio format. All of the following are external links:

Commercial Purchase for Use by All Students

Photo Credit: Image of Maine State Library is licensed through Creative Commons by Wikimedia

rev: 9/18/2018