Rewiring Inclusion: Strategies, tools and techniques to promote barrier-free learning

Report from Stephanie Warren, e-Learning Manager, New College Swindon.

JISC TECHDIS – REWIRING INCLUSION:
STRATEGIES, TOOLS AND TECHNIQUES TO PROMOTE BARRIER-FREE LEARNING

Conference – Tuesday 8th February
and Wednesday 9th February 2010

    Pre dinner plenary session – 8th Feb
    Julian Harty – Google – pre dinner session from Julian.

I was expecting a speech to cover all our queries about Google Wave, Chrome OS, Docs etc. however it fell short of my expectations – he did highlight the following points: Google wave is a good interface for use with the deaf, Jaws will work on a mobile phone (certain models)

    Opening Session
    Artur Ortega – Accessibility Evangelist for Yahoo and Donal Fitzpatrick from the School of Computing at Dublin City University.

Two excellent presentations from Artur and Donal giving their experiences using technology as they are both blind. Their chosen mobile phone was the iPhone because of the excellent accessibility. No 3rd party software is required as it comes with speech recognition. Accessibility on line must take into account all aspects of accessibility. Some benefits have been shared by disabled users from silver surfers needing similar accessibility. Accessibility must be perceivable, operable, understandable and robust.

    Other sessions
    Using mind-mapping software for inclusive learning. Dave Foord

The principles of mindmapping by Tony Buzan in his book called “Use your head” have been developed and expanded to this Mindmapping software. Examples given for use for both FE and HE coursework planning.

    Rewiring participation – how mobile technologies and web 2.0 has transformed inclusivity. Lilian Soon and Ron Mitchell

Both Lilian and Ron are well known in the /ulmobile technology environment and this session covered how to use a text wall (xlearn.co.uk) to gather opinion in the classroom. Ipadio is now on the iPhone – upload podcasts as they happen in real time to the web.

    Special needs at Manchester College. Alison Mills

iPod Touch – using apps for literacy and numeracy
Acer mini pcs through the deaf team
Nintendo Wii used for data analysis
Software used:
Text help read and write gold
Numbershark
Inspiration
Wordshark
Clicker
Touch Type Read and Spell

    Seeing things differently. Jon Mitchell, Henshaw College

Using cheaply priced mobile technology to engage students at this special school. The school bought small digital cameras and MP3 players to allow students to design and develop their own videos on Health and Safety etc. They used Jaws, Buzbies (screen with only 3 buttons), Flip cameras and Audacity.