Two Word docs side by side, with and without styles

Formatting Syllabi in Word (or any other Word document)

Along with delicious coffee provided by our in-house Coffee Barista, Dave Neal, and scrumptious treats we enjoyed a great conversation at our mini-session which focused on a couple of quick tips for formatting syllabi using Microsoft Word. When we structure … Continue reading Formatting Syllabi in Word (or any other Word document)

What is a screen reader?

A screen reader is a piece of software which reads web pages and documents out loud. Originally developed for persons who were visually impaired, it is now often used for a multitude of other reasons. Many who may have learning challenges, concussion syndrome, or those who simply want to listen to their email or a web page while they do something else use screen readers. All Apple products have VoiceOver built in – from iPhones to Mac desktops. Some Android devices have TalkBack. Windows users often use tools like JAWS (available on our public machines), and NVDA. If you are … Continue reading What is a screen reader?

Learning Glass – a different kind of blackboard

While attending the CSUN conference at the end of February, I visited San Diego State University to see what they might be doing with alternative classrooms and teaching. That is when I was introduced to the Learning Glass. In addition to recording all his classes using the Learning Glass, Professor Matt Anderson, started asking students to work on problems in front of the class. He reported that this increased student success rates because other students can see how their peers work through an issue, and it helps inform where students are getting stuck or where there additional explanations might be … Continue reading Learning Glass – a different kind of blackboard

Diversity is Normal

Accessibility in electronic communication has a legal definition.  It is really long, detailed and a little tedious but is something we need to pay attention to.  For myself and many others, accessibility is mostly about the varying degrees of learning differences that exist and educating ourselves about how to support and include those differences in an educational environment.  It is about making a decision to reduce barriers, to increase user friendliness and ease of access, and how to best engage with others in a way that supports as many learning styles as we can.  It is definitely not about reducing … Continue reading Diversity is Normal

Navigation Apps for visually impaired

I struck up a conversation with a fellow conference attendee at the AHEAD 2016 conference who happened to be blind.  We had an interesting conversation about getting around when you are visually impaired and he shared three apps he uses to navigate inside and outside buildings: overTHERE which uses a infrared technology developed more than 30 years ago to help with safer street crossing and recently adapted for mapping BlindSquare which can work with beacons to provide mapping inside buildings AllAccess which can access menus, logos,  and QR codes Continue reading Navigation Apps for visually impaired