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Update On The Developers Working Group

2017 December 22
by Charles LaPierre

A lot of progress has been made to address deficiencies in accessible educational materials, and there are now solutions that are effective for some students. However, as technology advances and we learn more about the different needs of students, we are able to develop tools and resources that can help an even broader range of learning styles and students with and without disabilities. The Developers Working Group is identifying areas that limit access to educational materials, with a particular focus on disabilities not traditionally associated with print such as cognitive and physical impairments.

The group is exploring options to simplify web pages and possibly ebooks to assist students with cognitive disabilities.  One possibility is researching a corpus translation of complex to simplified vocabulary and testing if it is possible to replace complex words with their simpler counterparts.  Another idea is the creation of a pictorial representation of key words that may help students with certain types of cognitive or reading challenges better understand the meaning of a paragraph. The group will be ideating around these concepts, testing potential solutions and documenting learnings. If you have an idea or are interested in testing prototypes, please contact me at Charlesl[at]Benetech[dot]org.

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