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Training: Describing Images

Training: Describing Images

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Training: Describing Images

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  1. Training: Describing Images Description-Enhanced Assessments for Students with Visual and Print Disabilities Bryan Gould WGBH National Center for Accessible Media

  2. DESCRIPTION-ENHANCED ASSESSMENTS FOR STUDENTS WITH VISUAL AND PRINT DISABILITIES Overview: The Utah, Colorado, and Kansas state education agencies are working together to examine the use of description as an accommodation for students with visual and print disabilities in order to provide access to visual and complex images within state assessments.

  3. DESCRIPTION-ENHANCED ASSESSMENTS FOR STUDENTS WITH VISUAL AND PRINT DISABILITIES Image Description has the potential to: • control standardized test administration • increase independent access to visual content • reduce costs in test construction

  4. DESCRIPTION-ENHANCED ASSESSMENTS FOR STUDENTS WITH VISUAL AND PRINT DISABILITIES The Problem: Image description is not an approved accommodation for use in any state assessments in any state.

  5. DESCRIPTION-ENHANCED ASSESSMENTS FOR STUDENTS WITH VISUAL AND PRINT DISABILITIES The Solution: • Train teachers in research-based descriptive practices • Test descriptions using “retired” test items from the Utah Performance Assessment System • Conduct two rounds of assessment with 450 students to measure comprehension and evaluate efficiency, clarity, and comprehension • Produce guidelines for best practices in description of test items for national dissemination • Results will provide DATA that will show whether image description can be considered a viable accommodation

  6. DESCRIPTION-ENHANCED ASSESSMENTS FOR STUDENTS WITH VISUAL AND PRINT DISABILITIES Project partners: • Utah, Colorado, and Kansas state education agencies • WGBH National Center for Accessible Media • The National Center on Severe and Sensory Disabilities • Panel of national advisors

  7. WE NEED YOUR HELP! Please Contact Kay or Silvia at The National Center on Severe and Sensory Disabilities at the University of Northern Colorado. Kay.Ferrell@unco.edu Silvia.Correa-Torres@unco.edu

  8. The Caption Center (est. 1972) IF YOU HOLD THE BIRD LIKE THIS, IT CAN’T FLY OUT OF THE KITCHEN.

  9. Descriptive Video Service (est. 1990) Narration: “On this farm, cows enjoy their favorite foods.” Description: “A cow chews on a mouthful of straw.” Narration: “Now, let’s see how a cow’s digestive system works.”

  10. NCAM (est. 1993) • Research and Development • supports national policy decisions • develops technical solutions • conducts research • promotes advocacy via outreach

  11. Recorded Audio

  12. HTML

  13. How to Write Descriptions • Detailed knowledge of the subject matter • Good writing skills and an excellent command of the vocabulary associated with the subject • Adequate access to reference and support materials to ensure that the descriptions are as clear and accurate as possible • Descriptions should be reviewed for accuracy by someone other than the original writer • Consider Context: • Why is the image there? • Who is the intended audience? • If there is no description what will the viewer miss?

  14. Description carries both an obligation and a responsibility to present information factually, without opinion or prejudice, in a manner that facilitates understanding. - Kay Ferrell What the describer selects for description, the manner it is described in, and how it is positioned in the modified text is final. - Phil Piety

  15. Describing for Children Learning and Experience

  16. Describing for Children • Description for children is fundamentally different than description for adults. • With adults, one can assume a certain level of exposure, whether it originates in literature or in other cultural experiences. • The same cannot be said for children with vision loss, whose experiences are limited by the visual impairment and time itself.

  17. Information Gathering Children with visual impairment generally gather information ways that are different than sighted children: • Inconsistent (things do not always make noise or produce an odor) • Fragmented (comes in bits and pieces) • Passive (not under the child’s control)

  18. Learning Principles Children with visual impairment generally share the following learning principles: • Parts to Wholes • Deliberate vs. Incidental • Limited Opportunities for Imitation and Practice

  19. Parts to Wholes A blind child can only touch an area as large as his or her hand at any one point in time, and then must put together those multiple tactile experiences to get a sense of the whole object.

  20. “It’s a bit like putting together a puzzle without knowing what the end product looks like.”

  21. Deliberate vs. Incidental Children with visual impairment usually will not benefit from incidental learning.

  22. Home Plate

  23. Imitation and Practice Children often learn skills by watching others perform them, trying it themselves, and practicing the behavior repeatedly until they obtain the desired result.

  24. Description as Education These different learning styles and ways of gathering information, affect how children with vision loss form concepts and categorize those concepts for later use.

  25. Description as Education It is particularly important that description provides the bridge between what the child experiences incidentally, and what the typical child experiences with vision.

  26. Description as Education For example, descriptions can make concepts easier to learn by presenting them deductively, from the general to the specific. In effect, the describer provides the structure that serves as an organizer for learning.

  27. Description as Education Think about description from the point of view of the child with vision loss. What seems obvious to a sighted child may be totally obscured to a child with vision loss.

  28. Describing for Younger Children Young children generally have short attention spans and may find it difficult to listen to and absorb large amounts of verbal information (RNIB, 2006).

  29. Describing for Younger Children • Short sentences • Vocabulary that is age appropriate • Keep it focused on action and emotion • Few details • Emphasize the tactile

  30. A tennis ball is the size of an apple and covered with fuzz. The machine is as big as a refrigerator.

  31. Word Choice • Pants • Slacks • Trousers • Capris • Jeans • Cargos • Sweats • Corduroys • Khakis

  32. Describing for Older Children & Adults Two people with the exact same visual diagnosis, age, and vision loss may have entirely different experiences in terms of concept development: one cannot be sure that everyone has had the same experience.

  33. Describing for Older Children & Adults Description writers have no control over who is listening to the description, and they need to prepare for multiple levels of understanding.

  34. Describing for Older Children & Adults • Assume more experience with visual elements, however, the audience is still varied • Longer sentences • Focus on tactile, color, placement of objects • Add social concerns • Add more parts to wholes • Keep it focused • Vocabulary that is age appropriate

  35. Details Help "A boy holds a fish in one hand and a bucket of fish in the other.” An approximation can add useful detail. Great Day of Fishing: "A boy holds a fish in one hand and a bucket of about twelve fish in the other.” Not a Great Day: "A boy holds a fish in one hand and a bucket of 3 or 4 fish in the other."

  36. Cutting to the Chase “Old” vs “A man about 80 years old, with a bent spine and white hair…” Helpful: “An old man walks barefoot on a dirt road, straining to carry a heavy load of hay.” Ok: "An old man and old woman smile as they stand in front of a garden.” Even Better: "Grandpa and Grandma smile as they stand in front of a garden.” (if Grandpa & Grandma have already been introduced)

  37. How to Write Descriptions • Detailed knowledge of the subject matter • Good writing skills and an excellent command of the vocabulary associated with the subject • Adequate access to reference and support materials to ensure that the descriptions are as clear and accurate as possible • Descriptions should be reviewed for accuracy by someone other than the original writer • Consider Context: • Why is the image there? • Who is the intended audience? • If there is no description what will the viewer miss?

  38. Easy Medium Difficult • Easy images include anything that can easily be described within a minute or two by a trained describer. • Medium images take more effort and usually require more description than a sentence or two. • Difficult images require the describer to stop to consider how to best describe this image and often require the describer to create a data table or nested list.

  39. Easy

  40. Medium & Difficult 1. Any graphic/diagram that may have begun as a data table. These include line graphs, pie charts, bar charts, scatter plots, and data tables themselves 2. Diagrams that integrate data within the image. These includes maps, Venn diagrams and complex diagrams like the carbon cycle 3. Flow charts, concept/idea webs and choice trees 4. Complex math equations and geometry

  41. STEM Description Guidelines Four years of NSF-funded research produced guidelines for making STEM images accessible. STEM = Science, Technology, Engineering and Math

  42. STEM Description Guidelines Discovered significant differences between descriptions provided and what blind/VI readers required and desired. New description methods were developed, tested and shown to be more effective and efficient that previous description methods. Training in new description methods given to over 70 organizations: K-12 teachers and professionals, colleges and universities, text book publishers, assistive technology companies Alternative Media Producers: Bookshare, RFB&D, American Printing House for the Blind, American Foundation for the Blind Hundreds of publications, books, websites, etc., now employ these guidelines for image description.

  43. Brevity The most frequent recommendation from respondents was for more brevity in description. It takes people with visual impairments more time to read books and articles than people without visual impairments and the process should not be further slowed down by unnecessarily long image descriptions.

  44. Brevity PREVIOUS Descriptive Practice: • The figure is a Venn diagram and shows 2 intersecting circles inside a large rectangle. The circles do not touch the rectangle. The circle on the left is labeled Africa and the number 93 is under Africa and above the circle. The circle on the right is labeled Asia and the number 155 is under Asia and above the circle. The intersection of the 2 circles is shaded and has the number 70 in the shaded region. PREFERRED Descriptive Practice: • The Venn diagram shows 2 intersecting circles, one labeled Africa 93 and the other labeled Asia 155. The area of intersection is labeled 70