[Athen] FW: GW Micro and Independence Science Make Science and Engineering Accessible to Blind Worldwide

Ron Stewart ron at ahead.org
Fri Apr 20 08:24:39 PDT 2012

Does this system also provide for accessible STEM input as well as output?

Ron Stewart

From: athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu [mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Sam Joehl
Sent: Friday, April 20, 2012 6:08 AM
To: athen-list at u.washington.edu
Subject: [Athen] FW: GW Micro and Independence Science Make Science and Engineering Accessible to Blind Worldwide


GW Micro and Independence Science Make Science and Engineering Accessible to Blind Worldwide

Fort Wayne, Indiana (April 19, 2012) - GW Micro, Inc. (www.gwmicro.com) and Independence Science (www.independencescience.com) are excited to announce a collaborative effort to make science and engineering accessible to students who are blind around the world.

A few years ago, the idea of students with visual impairments (VI) accessing scientific laboratory equipment and performing advanced data analysis independently was considered impossible, because most observations and manipulations of data were presented in a visual way. Students who are blind or visually impaired have been underrepresented in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields due to the limitations of access to scientific curricula in the classroom. The new collaborative effort between GW Micro and Independence Science strives to provide a solution that will enable more students who are blind and visually impaired to enter the STEM fields.

Research by Dr. Cary Supalo, Independence Science, and GW Micro has led to the development of a text-to-speech package that acts as the missing link between the technology and students who are visually impaired.

This comprehensive package is known as the ISci Lab Solution, which includes the following hardware and software components:


* Vernier LabQuest (stand-alone data collection interface)


* ISci Voice Plug-in (for LabQuest)
* Vernier Logger Pro (data collection and analysis application for PC)
* Window-Eyes (an advanced screen reader application for PC)
* Window-Eyes app for Logger Pro (enhances Logger Pro accessibility with Window-Eyes)

The ISci Lab Solution enables students who are blind to participate in hands-on learning activities with scientific data and curriculum. “We envision a classroom that exhibits the full integration of students with VI and reduces teacher anxiety about accommodating students during lab activities," said Dr. Supalo, who is himself a blind scientist. “My experience developing these access technologies has taught me that blindness need not be a barrier in the pursuit of one’s ambitions.”

With the advanced technology of the Window-Eyes screen reading software, the ISci Lab Solution is now available in multiple languages to enable science access to the blind around the globe. This was not possible until the release of the ISci Lab Solution package. For customers who already have Window-Eyes or one of the other components, each individual component of the ISci Lab Solution can be purchased separately. Additionally, various sensors can be purchased from Independence Science that can collect various types of data, such as temperature, force, or other information.

"We are very excited to bring this unique access solution to the market, which will help school systems and post-secondary institutions provide accessible science classrooms to the blind and visually impaired," said Dan Weirich, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for GW Micro.

GW Micro has been a trusted pioneer in the adaptive technology industry since 1990, and continues to lead with innovative, customer driven solutions.

Independence Science is the leading developer of accessible technology for students with visual impairments in the science laboratory. ISci research is funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation.

To take advantage of special introductory pricing, please contact GW Micro or Independence Science at the following:

GW Micro
Phone: (260) 489-3671
Email: sales at gwmicro.com
Web: www.gwmicro.com

Independence Science
Phone: (866) 862-9665
Email: info at independencescience.com
Web: www.independencescience.com


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