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Outreach Working Group Meeting Notes 2/20/13

2013 February 25
by Amaya Webster

DIAGRAM Outreach Working Group Meeting
February 20, 2013

Larry Goldberg, WGBH
Brian MacDonald, NBP
Julie Noblitt, Benetech
Ting Siu, Berkeley
Jane Thompson, APH
Laurie Vasquez, SBCC
Robert Jaquiss, Consultant
McKenzie Erickson, Benetech

Jim Allan, TSBVI
Lore Schindler, LAUSD
Anh Bui, Benetech

1. Welcome, roll call, introduction of new member, McKenzie Erickson.
2. Quick review 11/13/12 meeting notes and outcomes.
3. Discussion: As requested at last meeting, DIAGRAM supplied a master PowerPoint slide deck (DIAGRAM_Overview_v2) and a one-page Word document of talking points that explains what DIAGRAM is and why it’s important (DIAGRAMoutreachTalkingPoints). Improvements discussed were as follows:

  • In order for ppts to be accessible, they must either be supplied in RTF format, or, better yet, converted to a well-structured Word file with headings labeled with Level 2 heads.
  • Need to add a section that talks about applications for end users. When speaking to students and faculty, need to be able to tell them how DIAGRAM products benefit them in the classroom. Need to show concrete examples.
  • Note: Content Working Group is in the midst of creating a Sample Book that will be hosted at Benetech and will show different kinds of content with examples of different kinds of accessible images. We can point to this, eventually, in our materials. Sample Book intends to also provide info to publishers and other content creators about how to create accessible images.
  • Need to add something about evidence-based practices that encourages researchers to work with DIAGRAM tools.

4. Target audiences for outreach.  We discussed ways to group our list of 8 target audiences into subgroups that seem to go together in terms of talking points. Three groups emerged:

  • K-12 students, teachers, parents, AT professionals: important to make clear to them what is available, how they can use it. Encourage them to talk to publishers, administration, legislators to make these things available.
  • Publishers, authoring software tool-makers, amateur tool-makers (e.g. tactile images, 3-D models): Make them aware of what is possible; tools & information to help them; make clear the universal need and benefits.
  • Policy makers (LEAs, SEAs, school admins, state Education Depts., national education leadership [DoEd, etc.])

5. Ideas for next round of DIAGRAM subcontracts:

  • Efficacy studies on tactile graphics. Lots of work has been done on how to create them, but very little info on how effective they are. Lots of ideas in the book Touch the Sun (Robert has copies) but need someone to do a Ph.D. thesis on efficacy.
  • QC tools to improve and systematize crowdsourced image descriptions. Amateur image descriptions need lots of work down the line. What about a “MadLib” tool for image descriptions that steps people through the process in a structured way that would ensure that WGBH standards are followed.
  • Would be great to have a library of “approved” model descriptions that describers could refer to. Esp. good for complex images.  APH has free online image library – future discussion about how to collaborate?
  • Engage someone to do research on smart graphics (MIT-style algorithmically created intelligent graphics) [Note: we didn’t discuss this today, but check this out:]

6. Next steps and action items:

  • DIAGRAM will convert PPT slideset to well-structured Word document. Will also create RTF version of ppt with Level 2 headings. Will circulate both to WG.
  • Group will take starter slides and talking points and create specialized presentations/talking points for target audiences identified above:
    1. Laurie Vasquez: will do a pilot webinar for AT specialists in her region. Feedback from that will help develop a standard DIAGRAM presentation for that target audience. Statewide conference coming in October.
    2. Robert Jaquiss: will work on presentation/handout targeted to parents & students. NFB has a national meeting in July with parent/student seminars.
    3. Ting Siu: will work on presentation targeted to K-12 teachers for a future conference.
    4. ??? will work on materials targeted to policy-makers
    5. ??? will work on materials targeted to publishers and other content providers
    • Timeline: we should have very good final drafts for each target audience ready before the end of April. It’s understood that documents will continually evolve as we refine the messaging and new developments arise.

    7. Next Meetings

    • DIAGRAM to schedule next meeting for May 2013.
    • DIAGRAM “Office Hours” at CSUN: Thurs Feb 28th, 5pm – 6:30pm. Drop by for a few minutes and say hello or settle in and stay awhile to discuss business with your colleagues! Exact room will be emailed when we know it on Wednesday.

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