Reasonable Adjustments: Blind and Vision Impaired
Reasonable adjustments refer to a “measure or action taken to assist a student with disability to participate in education and training on the same basis as other students”1 They are designed to place students with disability on a more equal footing, and not to give them any kind of advantage.
Reasonable adjustments made for a student with disability must maintain the academic integrity of the qualification, must not cause a health or safety risk for another student(s) or negatively impact upon the learning experience of another student(s).
Adjustments will be designed and negotiated to meet the needs of the individual student, but in addition to contact with a designated disability practitioners, commonly include the following.
To accommodate individual students
Students who are blind or vision impaired may benefit from a range of inclusive teaching and assessment strategies. Some adjustments that are frequently used for students who are blind or vision impaired include:
- Provision of printed materials, transcripts and reading materials in a format that best suits the student, such as Braille, audio recordings, large print, DAISY, EPUB 3 and so on.
- Provision of recorded lectures.
- Transcription of visual resources such as PowerPoint presentations, videos and YouTube resources.
- Access to a Student Access Study Centre if available on campus.
- Provision of a Practical Assistant within laboratories or workshops.
- Negotiation of additional time to complete practical tasks and assessments.
- Access to Screen Reader Assistive Technology, such as JAWS.
- Access to Screen Enlarger Assistive technology, such as Zoom Text.
- Provision of Assistive Technology in examinations.
- Examination questions in electronic or enlarged format.
- Extra time provided prior to examinations for computer set up.
- Extra time provided within examinations.
- Arrangement for student to meet with faculty prior to starting to identify strategies for accommodating the implications of the disability in relation to the inherent requirements of any required practicums.
- Support with wayfinding on campus until the student is able to navigate independently.
- Reformatting or descriptive notes on coloured resources to support students with colour deficiency.
1 Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) 2013. Student Diversity. Accessed on July 21 2016 from australiancurriculum.edu.au/studentdiversity/students-with-disability
Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training, Identifying Student Requirements and Making Reasonable Adjustments. Accessed on July 20 2016 from adcet.edu.au/inclusive-teaching/working-with-students/making-reasonable-adjustments/
Australian Disability Clearinghouse on Education and Training, Blind and Vision Impaired. Accessed on July 19 2016 from adcet.edu.au/disability-practitioner/reasonable-adjustments/disability-specific-adjustments/blind-and-vision-impaired/
Queensland VET Development Centre (2010), Reasonable adjustment in teaching, learning and assessment for students with a disability. A guide for VET practitioners. Queensland Government. Accessed on July 20, 2016 from adcet.edu.au/resource/7383/file/1
Vicker, M.Z., (2010). Accommodating College Students with Learning Disabilities: ADD, ADHD and Dyslexia. Pope Center Series on Higher Education, The John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy: Raliegh, North Carolina. Accessed on July 20 2012 from http://www.popecenter.org/acrobat/pope_articles/vickers_march_2010.pdf