Challenges Faced by the Visual Impairment Students While Inducing Assistive Technology
K Srinivas Reddy, Dr. Chandrakala
Visual Impairment, Assistive Technology, Keyboard, Job Access with Speech, adopted computer keyboard.
The study aimed at exploring barriers to the use of computer assistive technology among students with visual impairment at special schools for the visually challenged in the state of Telangana. A case study design was adopted, and the purposive sampling technique used to select 55 participants for the study. The gathered qualitative data using an in-depth interview guide to investigate challenges to the use of keyboarding skills and Job Access with Speech (JAWS). Data were transcribed and analysed thematically. That is the key themes were identified in the conversations and these were drawn and discussed. This was done using both the narrative methods and opened quotes from interviews. The findings indicated that challenges limiting effective use of assistive technology in the schools were more personal than external influences. This was because most of the challenges were due to the individual response to the training and familiarity in developing their competencies in using assistive technology. Based on this, it was recommended that efforts should be made to stock the laboratory with additional computers. Directly in line with the first recommendation, it was further suggested that more practice time should be created or the students with visual impairment to maximize computer use. And adapted computer keyboard (with Braille signages) should be made available to children with visual impairment. Also, Licensed JAWS must be acquired by the schools to advance students’ competence in using assistive technology. A number of the challenges were expressed by the students on their non- familiarity with the JAWS. As a result, it was recommended that instructors and trainers at the schools should engage the students in revised lessons on introduction to computer. This will help to refresh the minds of students with visual impairment.
Article Details
Unique Paper ID: 151349

Publication Volume & Issue: Volume 8, Issue 1

Page(s): 63 - 68
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