[Athen] Accommodations for Student Who Is Extremely Visually Impaired, Has Extreme Hearing Loss, Has Tremors, and Mobility Issues

Stephen (Alex) Marositz smarositz at csudh.edu
Fri Apr 26 14:49:01 PDT 2019

Hi Cassandra

Nice meeting you on the COP call the other day.

It sounds like you are covering your bases pretty well. One thing, I may consider replacing the Smartpen-iPad set up with a portable video magnifier perhaps one that streams directly to his iPad. That way he could see the board directly. I believe there are even video magnifiers that stream to iPads. Check out the:
Transformer HD with Wi-Fi https://nelowvision.com/product/transformer-hd-with-wifi-ocr/

Or, E-Bot https://nelowvision.com/product/transformer-hd-with-wifi-ocr/

I have worked with a student who used the transformer and, frankly, I wasn’t impressed but I think it had to do more with the Wi-Fi___33 connection in the classroom than the device itself. If you are using remote RTC, I suspect Wi-Fi isn’t a problem for you.

I hope this is helpful.

Stephen Alex Marositz
ATI Coordinator
Ext 3077

From: athen-list <athen-list-bounces at mailman12.u.washington.edu> On Behalf Of Cassandra Tex
Sent: Thursday, April 25, 2019 7:47 AM
To: Alt Media CCC Listserv <ALTMEDIA at listserv.cccnext.net>; ATHEN Listserv <athen-list at u.washington.edu>
Subject: [Athen] Accommodations for Student Who Is Extremely Visually Impaired, Has Extreme Hearing Loss, Has Tremors, and Mobility Issues

Hi All,
We have a student who is a Math & Physics major (in advanced Math and Physics classes – not beginning the majors). He has many limitations that include: extremely visually impaired (needs 3x-4x magnification); has extreme hearing loss (reads lips only – but with his visual impairment, not sure how much he can actually get from lip reading); has tremors, and uses a motorized scooter/wheelchair. He does not read Braille or use ASL. We are struggling with finding the right mix of accommodations that will meet his needs in the classroom (both lecture-type setting as well as laboratory setting).

Here is what we are doing thus far for classroom accommodations:

• Providing alternate formats (when he requests it. Oddly enough, he has not requested his textbooks to be put into an alternate format at this point). He does not use JAWS or Voice Over. He enlarges PDF files.

• He sits in the front of the class

• Wheelchair accessible, adjustable-height table (not adjustable on the fly, but the legs are adjustable, and they are adjusted to the highest setting)

• Provided a laptop and high-powered microphone for real-time captioning (remote). We live in a rural area and do not have anyone local who can provide real-time captioning.

• Provided a student (visual assistant) who uses a livescribe pen to write what he/she sees on the board on livescribe paper and this is transmitted to the student via Bluetooth to a tablet he is holding. Admittedly, there is a lot for him to look at in class (the laptop for captioning, the tablet for what is happening on the board, etc.)

• MAGic dongle for use in the computer labs

Here is what we are doing thus far for testing accommodations:

• Access to CCTV

• Access to computer with screen magnification software

• Access to large-print keyboard

• Access to alternate pointing device if necessary (because of the tremors)

• Access to MathType (which he uses at home)

He has his own personal iPad, and he is quite proficient at using this (to get an idea of what kind of magnification and technology he uses). He does not use voice over – just magnification and pinching to zoom.

As you can imagine, in the math classes (higher-level math), there is a lot of white board (or in our case…chalk board – yes, I did say chalk board) use.

We want to be sure we are providing the best mix of accommodations for this student. Are we missing something? Could we do better? Suggestions are very much appreciated!

Side note: I have looked into the Luidia Smartmarkers (these things are pretty cool!) https://www.luidia.com/smartmarker/. These may assist/replace the student (visual) assistant, and get the student more real-time access to what is happening on the board (rather than waiting for the assistant to copy what is on the board). These are only for white boards, and currently he is in classes with chalkboards only. We can certainly look into getting portable whiteboards though.

Ideas and suggestions greatly appreciated!

Cassandra Tex
Assistive Technology Specialist
Humboldt State University
tex at humboldt.edu<mailto:tex at humboldt.edu>
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