6 ADA accessibility trends revealed in our mid-year 2022 report — from blog.usablenet.com by Jason Taylor

Excerpt:

We just published our mid-year ADA web and App report created by the UsableNet research team reviewing all lawsuits filed in federal courts under the ADA and California state court under Unruh. We review the cases to identify where a digital property, including websites, mobile apps, and video, is the subject of the claim. Our bi-annual reports let UsableNet inform our clients and provide them with the most up-to-date advice for planning their digital accessibility initiatives.

Here is my main take on some key numbers based on what we have seen in 2022 and what’s driving those numbers. 


 WEB ACCESSIBILITY LAWSUIT NUMBERS ARE HIGH AND SET TO ONLY GET HIGHER.

 

Bionic Reading

Bionic Reading

 

 

From DSC:
Thanks to my good friend Chris for this resource. By the way, this Chrome Extension, Converter, and API remind me a bit of Microsoft’s Immersive Reader.

Also related, see:

 

4 Trends to Watch in Education — from caitlintucker.com by Caitlin Tucker

Excerpt:

Last month, I delivered a keynote on the future of education. It’s a vast topic, so I focused on four trends likely to impact our work as educators.

  1. Continued growth in blended and online learning.
  2. Districts confront record-high teacher turnover.
  3. Students continue to struggle with trauma and learning loss.
  4. Increased concerns about equity and access.

As school leaders prepare for the 2022-2023 school year, these four trends can help them identify district priorities and create a strategic plan for the year ahead.

Also see:

What is “unschooling”? My Reflection Matters believes “it takes a village” — from ctpublic.org (Connecticut) by Katie Pellico and Luch Nalpathanchil

Excerpt:

Families are asked to log their “exit” from public school with the state agency. There were 550 exits reported in 2019, and that number rose to “around 3,500 in 2020.” By 2021, that number was at 2,300, though the Department of Education notes “students who have not returned to school by October 1 could still have returned to school any day after that for the remainder of the year.”

14 QUICK WAYS TO TECH-UP YOUR CLASSROOM — from thetechedvocate.org by Matthew Lynch

Excerpt:

With technology becoming a more significant part of the classroom, you might feel that incorporating tech-enabled tools into your classroom is a difficult job, but it doesn’t have to be. There are plenty of useful and fun apps out there that can help you bring technology into your classroom in a way that’s both entertaining and engaging.

Young learners are always surrounded by and exposed to technology, and it’s something that they have a natural affinity for. That’s why technology can be a useful educational tool to boost learner engagement and content retention.

Here are 14 easy ways that you can incorporate tech into your class…

5 Tips for Tackling Classroom Redesigns — from techlearning.com by Ellen Ullman
Creating learning spaces that are accessible for students with specific needs almost always leads to positive outcomes for all learners

 

Small Business Website Accessibility Tips — from boia.org

Excerpt:

Many small business owners think of digital accessibility as a series of technical, complicated rules. If you have limited resources for web design and development, accessibility can seem like an expensive extra — but fortunately, that’s not the case.

Website accessibility is achievable on any budget, and it’s a savvy investment regardless of the size of your business. Even if you can’t afford professional testing and remediation, you can take immediate steps to remove barriers that affect people with disabilities. Here are a few tips for getting started.

Also relevant from boia.org, see:

One last accessibility-related item from equalentry.com:

 

CLASSROOM AND AT-HOME ACCOMMODATIONS FOR DYSLEXIA — from thetechedvocate.org by Matthew Lynch

Excerpt:

For most kids of school age, recognizing letters and learning to pronounce them comes as easy as possible. However, for children living with Dyslexia, it is typically an uphill task to achieve. Dyslexia is a reading disorder that impedes a child’s early academic development by significantly decreasing the ability to process graphic symbols, especially where it concerns language. Such children may struggle with language development before school age and experience difficulties learning to spell when they eventually enroll in school. Some symptoms commonly exhibited by dyslexic children include reversed letter and word sequences, weak literacy skills, and poor handwriting.

In all these, the good news for parents and educators with dyslexic children in their care is that with early diagnosis and suitable accommodations, they can learn to read like the other children.

CLASSROOM AND AT-HOME ACCOMMODATIONS FOR DYSCALCULIA — from thetechedvocate.org by Matthew Lynch

Excerpt:

If you have a child struggling with basic math skills and you’ve done everything else to resolve the situation yet it persists, the child might be suffering from Dyscalculia. Dyscalculia is a learning disorder typified by an inability to grasp basic math skills. The peculiar thing about this learning disorder is how it seems only to concern itself with foundational math skills. Lots of people living with this disorder will go on to learn advanced mathematical principles and concepts without any problems. Although manifestations of Dyscalculia will differ from person to person, another symptom commonly associated with the disorder is visual-spatial struggles or difficulty in processing what they hear.

It does not matter whether you are a parent or a teacher; if you are looking for the right accommodations needed to aid students with Dyscalculia, you have come to the right post. These are some steps you can take both in the classroom and at home to ease learning for students with Dyscalculia.

CLASSROOM AND AT-HOME ACCOMMODATIONS FOR DYSNOMIA — from thetechedvocate.org by Matthew Lynch

Excerpt:

When kids struggle with recalling words, numbers, names, etc., off the top of their heads without recourse to a visual or verbal hint, they might likely be suffering from Dysnomia. Dysnomia is a learning disability marked by an inability to recollect essential aspects of the oral or written language.

CLASSROOM AND AT-HOME ACCOMMODATIONS FOR DYSGRAPHIA — from thetechedvocate.org by Matthew Lynch

Excerpt:

Like most learning disabilities, Dysgraphia makes learning difficult for students. In this case, this learning disorder is peculiar to handwriting and motor skills proficiency. Students living with Dysgraphia can suffer from problems ranging from forming letters accordingly, transferring their thoughts onto paper, tying their shoelaces, and zipping a jack. It is pretty standard that Dysgraphia sufferers compensate for their struggles with handwriting by developing remarkable verbal skills. However, this disorder is prone to misdiagnosis. It is due to a lack of sufficient research on the subject.

As a parent or an educator, if you have students who live with Dysgraphia, this post will show you which accommodations you need to put in place to help them learn correctly.


Also relevant/see:

EARLY INTERVENTION: A GUIDE — from thetechedvocate.org by Matthew Lynch

Excerpt:

Educators must effectively identify a student who needs early intervention, whether for autism, learning disorders, or even reading difficulties. The more serious the issue, the more essential early action becomes.


 

How to ensure we benefit society with the most impactful technology being developed today — from deepmind.com by Lila Ibrahim

In 2000, I took a sabbatical from my job at Intel to visit the orphanage in Lebanon where my father was raised. For two months, I worked to install 20 PCs in the orphanage’s first computer lab, and to train the students and teachers to use them. The trip started out as a way to honour my dad. But being in a place with such limited technical infrastructure also gave me a new perspective on my own work. I realised that without real effort by the technology community, many of the products I was building at Intel would be inaccessible to millions of people. I became acutely aware of how that gap in access was exacerbating inequality; even as computers solved problems and accelerated progress in some parts of the world, others were being left further behind. 

After that first trip to Lebanon, I started reevaluating my career priorities. I had always wanted to be part of building groundbreaking technology. But when I returned to the US, my focus narrowed in on helping build technology that could make a positive and lasting impact on society. That led me to a variety of roles at the intersection of education and technology, including co-founding Team4Tech, a non-profit that works to improve access to technology for students in developing countries. 


Also relevant/see:

Microsoft AI news: Making AI easier, simpler, more responsible — from venturebeat.com by Sharon Goldman

But one common theme bubbles over consistently: For AI to become more useful for business applications, it needs to be easier, simpler, more explainable, more accessible and, most of all, responsible

 

 

UX, Accessibility, & More: ID Links 5/24/22 — from christytuckerlearning.com by Christy Tucker

Excerpt:

As I read online, I bookmark resources I find interesting and useful. I share these links periodically here on my blog. This post includes links on UX, accessibility, branching scenarios, Twine, instructional design blogs, free/freemium tools, and systems thinking.

 

Also from Christy Tucker, see:

 

SXSW EDU Launch Winner Our Worlds Bringing Native American Culture to Life Through Mobile-Based Immersive Reality — from the74million.org by Tim Newcomb

Excerpt:

Take a stroll along the La Jolla Shores Beach in San Diego, and you might find sand between your toes. But users of the new Our Worlds app, winner of the 2022 SXSW EDU Launch Competition, might also find much more. Through augmented reality, they can look at that same stretch of beach and see handmade tule boats from the local Kumeyaay tribe.

Our Worlds launched to highlight Native American history via modern-day technology, putting what founder and CEO Kilma Lattin calls “code to culture” and pushing Native American civilization forward. Lattin says Our Worlds offers a full suite of technology — virtual reality, augmented reality, artificial intelligence — to capture all the components that make a culture.

 

Apple’s first AR/VR headset inches closer to launch — from protocol.com by Nat Rubio-Licht
The company reportedly showed off the device to board members as it makes progress on the headset’s operating system.

Camp K12 Launches Hatch Kids, a Metaverse & AR/VR Creation Platform for Kids — from edtechreview.in by Stephen Soulunii

….

 

 

Opportunities for Education in the Metaverse -- from downes.ca by Stephen Downes

Opportunities for Education in the Metaverse — from downes.ca by Stephen Downes

Excerpt:

This short presentation introduces major elements of the metaverse, outlines some applications for education, discusses how it may be combined with other technologies for advanced applications, and outlines some issues and concerns.

Also relevant/see:

What Should Higher Ed in the Metaverse Look like? – from linkedin.com by Joe Schaefer

Excerpt:

The Metaverse is coming whether we like it or not, and it is time for educators to think critically about how it can benefit students. As higher education continues to evolve, I believe every learning product and platform working with or within the Metaverse should, at least, have these functionalities:


Addendum on 5/23/22:


 

From DSC:
Wow…I hadn’t heard of voice banking before. This was an interesting item from multiple perspectives.

Providing a creative way for people with Motor Neurone Disease to bank their voices, I Will Always Be Me is a dynamic and heartfelt publication — from itsnicethat.com by Olivia Hingley
Speaking to the project’s illustrator and creative director, we discover how the book aims to be a tool for family and loved ones to discuss and come to terms with the diagnosis.

Excerpt:

Whilst voice banking technology is widely available to those suffering from MND, Tal says that the primary problem is “that not enough people are banking their voice because the process is long, boring and solitary. People with MND don’t want to sit in a lonely room to record random phrases and sentences; they already have a lot to deal with.” Therefore, many people only realise or interact with the importance of voice banking when their voice has already deteriorated. “So,” Tal expands, “the brief we got was: turn voice banking into something that people will want to do as soon as they’re diagnosed.”

 

Teacher Kelly VanDyke awarded ‘Educator of the Year’ by the Down Syndrome Association of West Michigan — from mlive.com by Skyla Jewell-Hammie

Excerpt:

Grand Rapids elementary teacher Kelly VanDyke was recently recognized as the 2022 Educator of the Year by the Down Syndrome Association of West Michigan.

VanDyke, who teaches at Central Elementary in Kenowa Hills Public Schools, was celebrated for her successful, supportive approach to teaching children with Down syndrome…

 

New Accessibility Features Coming to Apple Devices — from .lifewire.com by Cesar Cadenas; fact checked by Jerri Ledford
Helping people with disabilities navigate the world

Excerpt:

Door Detection is a new mode coming to Apple’s Magnifier app. As the name suggests, the feature helps people find the door and how far they are it, and describes various attributes of the door. These attributes include if the door is open or closed as well as how to open it.

 

Addendum on 5/19/22:

Addendums on 5/20/22:

 

From DSC:
I love the parts about seeing instant language translations — including sign language! Very cool indeed!
(With thanks to Ori Inbar out on Twitter for this resource.)

Realtime American Sign Language translation via potential set of AR glasses from Google

Also see:

 

Inside Microsoft’s new Inclusive Tech Lab — from engadget.com by C. Low; with thanks to Nick Floro on Twitter for some of these resources
“An embassy for people with disabilities.”

Increasing our Focus on Inclusive Technology — from mblogs.microsoft.com by Dave Dame

Excerpt:

In recent years, tied to Microsoft’s mission of empowering every person and organization on the planet to achieve more, teams from across Microsoft have launched several products and features to make technology more inclusive and accessible. [On May 10, 2022], as part of the 12th annual Microsoft Ability Summit, we celebrate a new and expanded Inclusive Tech Lab, powerful new software features, and are unveiling Microsoft adaptive accessories designed to give people with disabilities greater access to technology.

Microsoft’s Latest Hardware Is More Accessible and Customizable — from wired.com by Brenda Stolyar
The wireless system—a mouse, a button, and a hub—is designed to increase productivity for those with limited mobility.

Excerpt:

Microsoft if expanding its lineup of accessibility hardware. During its annual Ability Summit—an event dedicated to disability inclusion and accessibility—the company showed attendees some new PC hardware it has developed for users with limited mobility. Available later this year, the wireless system will consist of an adaptive mouse, a programmable button, and a hub to handle the connection to a Windows PC. Users set up the devices to trigger various keystrokes, shortcuts, and sequences. These new input devices can be used with existing accessories, and they can be further customized with 3D-printed add-ons. There are no price details yet.

Along these lines, also see:

  • 14 Equity Considerations for Ed Tech — from campustechnology.com by Reed Dickson
    Is the education technology in your online course equitable and inclusive of all learners? Here are key equity questions to ask when considering the pedagogical experience of an e-learning tool.
 

The Future Is Here: Assistive Technology for Learning Disabilities — from studycorgi.com; with thanks to Alysson Webb for this resource

Excerpt:

Equal learning and personal development opportunities help ensure everyone reaches their highest potential. However, it is important to look at comparable needs. People with learning disabilities can require individual or additional services from a school program. According to the National Center of Educational Statistics, in 2019 – 2020, 14% (7.3 million) of children from 3 to 21 received special education services in the US. One-third of them had various learning disabilities that required specific assistance and tools.

Table of Contents

  1. What Is a Learning Disability?
  2. Assistive Technology (AT) in the Classroom
  3. AT for Learning Disabilities: Benefits & Tools
  4. References
 
© 2022 | Daniel Christian