To determine whether a suite of audible adaptive technologies would increase the hands-on participation of high school students with blindness or low vision in chemistry and physics courses, data were examined from a multi-year field study conducted with students in mainstream classrooms at secondary schools across the United States. The students worked with sighted laboratory partners. Four categories of data were analyzed with regard to levels of hands-on participation, including quantitative coding of video-recorded laboratory lessons, qualitative assessment of the same videos, student interviews, and teacher interviews. Evidence in support of the efficacy of the technologies to increase the students' hands-on participation during laboratory lessons was substantial. However, certain factors affected the quantitative interpretation of the data: students with usable low vision experienced similar levels of participation both with and without the adaptations, and students with little usable vision often required more time than did students with full vision to accomplish some laboratory tasks. Additional factors inherent to natural educational environments were also determined to have strong effects on student outcomes.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Chemistry (miscellaneous)