Code.org’s Hour of Code activities are one-hour tutorials designed to expose K-12 students to coding and other aspects of computer science. Although there are numerous Hour of Code projects, many are not accessible to students who are blind and visually impaired. However, there are two that utilize the Quorum programming language and are accessible.
Yes. For example, there is a community of individuals who are blind and use the Arduino platform to build hardware devices. Arduino allows users to build digital devices that can sense and control objects in the physical world.
Low vision is used to describe a loss of visual acuity while retaining some vision. It applies to individuals with sight who are unable to read a newspaper at a normal distance of viewing, even with the aid of glasses or contact lenses. People with low vision often need adaptations in lighting and/or enlarged print to read something. There are two specific types of low vision:
In most cases, a student who is blind will type written assignments on the computer. The assignments can then be submitted online via the same methods as their sighted counterparts, as long as those methods are designed in a way that is accessible to students' assistive technologies.
Students who are blind can also submit materials in print form, or via email, flash drive, or via file-transfer service, depending on the preferences of the student and instructor. Sometimes, particularly during tests, students may also dictate short answers to a reader who will handwrite responses.
Yes. It is most helpful if all speakers identify themselves by name prior to responding to a question or making a discussion comment. Any demonstrations or visual aides will also need to be verbally described.
Calculators are commonly used at every education level. Calculators that can perform statistical or scientific calculations, manipulate matrices, and plot functions on a graph are particularly helpful in the study of higher-level mathematics. Although most scientific or graphing calculators are not accessible to someone who does not have usable sight, there are options available that allow students who are blind to use these tools successfully.
Nemeth Code is a special type of braille used for math and science notations. It was developed in 1946 by Dr. Abraham Nemeth as part of his doctoral studies in mathematics. In 1952, the Braille Authority of North America (BANA) accepted Nemeth Code as the standard code for representing math and science expressions in braille. With Nemeth Code, one can render all mathematical and technical documents into six-dot braille, including expressions in these areas:
My name is Robbie and I am blind. I have been using computers for several years and consider myself "computer-proficient". I access the computer via a combination of speech output (Jaws for Windows™) and a dynamic Braille display. I am presently enrolled in the Computer Programming program at the local community college. One of the courses required in the program is Database Concepts. The Database Application used in this course is Microsoft Access, an application that is run under Microsoft Windows™, a point-and-click environment.
When writing text or equations on the board or in PowerPoint, it is important to clearly say aloud what is being written. When mathematical expressions and formulae are involved, attention to detail, such as capitalization and the placement of parentheses, is crucial. If graphs are presented, the features relevant to the material being covered should be described during the lecture. Avoid vague terms such as "this", "that", "here", and "there".