Synergizing braille and science: Real-Time Tactile Graphics Access in Science Laboratory Settings for students who are blind – Ashley Nashleanas

To date, there has never been a tool that provides opportunities for students with blindness and low vision (BLV) to perform data collection and analysis in the form of multi-line, real-time, and refreshable tactile graphics when in a laboratory setting. This form of data access is necessary for students with BLV to receive an equitable experience when working in a laboratory setting with their nondisabled peers. Building on the concept of the Sci-Voice Talking LabQuest, which allows students with BLV to perform data collection activities in an auditory way, the Sci-Dot is a multiline, refreshable braille and tactile graphics display. This technological advancement is a game-changer in the STEM access world, providing students with BLV the opportunity to engage with their nondisabled peers more timely and directly than ever before. I will present results on the usability of the current prototype as experienced by individuals with BLV who attended this year’s National Federation of the Blind (NFB) convention, along with developments in progress based on participant feedback.

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