At the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) Jernigan Institute we work on creating educational programs and tools that enhance the participation of blind students. The summer of 2013 marks our tenth summer in a row providing high quality instruction in science, technology, engineering, and math—see the NFB STEM-X program http://www.blindscience.org/STEMX. Below is an announcement about an exciting product that will be tested at the 2013 NFB National Convention. In the past, too much technology development was done without input from blind students. The work being done by this team of researchers and technology developers is exactly where we should be putting time and energy as blind consumers. Our participation in this research will make the resulting technologies truly powerful. I encourage you to take part in this important research.
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
gh, LLC (makers of the ReadHear e-book reader software) and the University of Alabama in Huntsville are developing a new software program to enable improved math education (particularly in advanced subjects like algebra and calculus) for blind and visually impaired students. They are looking for volunteers to participate in one of eight testing sessions on Tuesday, July 2, from 1:00-5:00 p.m., to help evaluate and refine the software’s design.
Thirty-two participant slots are available (four slots every thirty minutes, starting from 1:00-4:30 p.m.). Appointments are recommended. Walk-up time slots may be available on a limited basis.
Participants must have recent experience with Windows, screen-reader software, and high school algebra. Current high school or college students are preferred.
During the thirty-minute testing session, participants will be introduced to the software, instructed in its use, and then provided with a series of basic algebra-related exercises to determine the effectiveness and efficiency of the software’s interface. At the end of the session, participants will be able to give feedback and suggestions about the software. All participants will receive a small gift as thanks for their time and assistance.