[Athen] ASL with descriptive voice over?

National Deaf Center help at nationaldeafcenter.org
Fri Sep 6 09:19:10 PDT 2019

Greetings Maria,

The NDC | nav team saw your inquiry posted on the ATHEN listserv. While
NDC’s primary mission is to support deaf students in higher education, we
wanted to contribute information to the discussion about supporting a blind
student in an ASL classroom. We hope you find the following information
useful as you navigate this circumstance.

We agree that the recommendation from your colleague regarding use of
tactile interpreting is a possibility for this student and NDC would like
to share with you additional referrals that could provide support.
Regarding options for course materials that are accessible to blind
students learning ASL, NDC recommends you reach out to American Sign
Language Teachers Association <https://aslta.org/> (ASLTA). ASLTA is an
organization made up of more than 1000 ASL and Deaf Studies educators.
They might have an educator who has experienced a similar situation and be
able to offer support to you.

Another possible referral is Helen Keller National Center
<https://www.helenkeller.org/hknc>(HKNC). HKNC has regional
representatives that could possibly provide some assistance. The regional
rep for your area is Cecelia Norman and her email is cecelia.norman at hknc.org

You might also wish to reach out to other institutions that have experience
with blind students taking ASL classes. NDC is aware of one institution
that has experience with blind students taking ASL classes and they have
given us permission to share their contact information with you; Austin
Community College, Virginia Bennett: virginia.bennett at austincc.edu

NDC also offers a professional listserv that consists of professionals
working with deaf individuals in a variety of settings in higher
education. You could post your questions to our listserv and see if anyone
can offer support. To post to the listserv send an email to
nationaldeafcenter at utlists.utexas.edu. (Note: all posts are moderated and
must wait for a listserv administrator for approval). Our records do
indicate you are already a member of our listserv, but if you are having
difficulty access it please let us know.

While we hope the above referrals are helpful for you, it is also important
to discuss the faculty’s responsibility to make their classroom
accessible. It is critical for faculty to understand that access for
students is framed with an understanding “effective communication”.
Determining effective communication for a student is not always a simple
and straightforward answer. Both Title II and Title III entities are
legally responsible to ensure “effective communication” services are
provided. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) states the purpose of Effective
Communication <https://www.ada.gov/effective-comm.htm> is “to ensure that
the person with a vision, hearing, or speech disability can communicate
with, receive information from, and convey information to, the covered
entity.” Effective communication is not just about providing auxiliary aids
and services, but also ensuring that the students have full access.

It is important for faculty to understand that a blind student will have
their own unique experiences and to reach out to the individual students in
their class for any specific communications challenges that need to be
addressed. The following are some general tips for working with students in
the classroom that might be helpful in this situation:


Minimizing classroom distractions

If using interpreters in the classroom, allow for a complete
interpretation before moving on to the next topic. Allow for a complete
interpretation before moving forward with instruction

Establish turn-taking norms such as having participants identify
themselves prior to making comments.

If incorporating interpreters to support the students, plan breaks as
needed. The task of interpreting is cognitively and physically challenging.
The allowance of breaks is especially important when there is only one

Elicit feedback from the blind students and communication access team

We hope you find the above information and resources useful in navigating
an accessible environment for the blind students in this environment. If
you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are
here for you! Shortly, you will receive a survey asking for feedback on the
interactions and support provided by NDC. Your feedback is appreciated and
will be used to help us improve our services. Have a great day!

* NDC | nav team *
Tia Ivanko, Savio Chan, Lore Kinast,
Dave Litman, & Stephanie Zito
*help at nationaldeafcenter.org <help at nationaldeafcenter.org>*
[image: https://www.nationaldeafcenter.org/]

NDC is a technical assistance and dissemination center jointly funded by
the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education Programs
(OSEP) and the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA)
#H326D160001. Disclaimer:
the contents of this email do not necessarily represent the policies of the
federal government.

On Wed, Sep 4, 2019 at 12:17 PM Maria Bohn <mbohn at bergen.edu> wrote:

> Does anyone know of any web site or book that show American Sign Language

> with descriptions of HOW the signs look rather than just a video or

> picture? I have 2 blind students taking ASL and struggling already on day

> one because the class moves faster than we can keep up so looking for

> supplementary materials they can use at home.



> Maria Bohn

> Senior Resource Accommodations Specialist

> Assistive Technology Specialist

> Office of Specialized Services

> Bergen Community College

> _______________________________________________

> athen-list mailing list

> athen-list at mailman12.u.washington.edu

> http://mailman12.u.washington.edu/mailman/listinfo/athen-list


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