University of Oregon

How can image descriptions be used to support students with visual impairments?

PDFPrintE-mail

Currently, means of improving text accessibility for learners with visual impairments (VI) are common and widely available, however similar supports for understanding images remain relatively rare.  In working to remedy this, technologies have recently been developed (e.g. MathTrax, Digital Talking Books [DTBs]) that automatically translate complex images into more accessible formats such as detailed text descriptions and auditory representations.  Providing descriptions of mathematical images such as graphs, tables, and charts can greatly enhance the ability of students with VI to gain a more complete understanding of math material than might otherwise be possible.  This type of accessibility support also decreases students’ dependence on their teachers for math comprehension, increasing their ability to explore material independently and draw their own conclusions.  Research has shown that while providing accessible image descriptions to students with VI greatly improves their success in engaging with graphical data, it will be important to develop and adhere to uniform standards for producing these descriptions. Areas in which image descriptions may be especially useful include webpage accessibility, standardized testing, and classroom instruction.

We are in the beginning stages on conducting a literature search on this topic and our initial findings, organized into general categories, are listed below. Please add any suggestions or feedback in the comments section.

Constructing Image Descriptions

Ault, H. K., Deloge, J. W., Lapp, R. W., Morgan, M. J., & Barnett, J. R. (2002). Evaluation of long descriptions of statistical graphics for blind and low vision web users. In K. Miesenberger, J. Klaus, & W. Zagler (Eds.), Computers Helping People with Special Needs (Vol. 2398, pp. 517–526). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer Berlin Heidelberg. Retrieved from http://www.springerlink.com/content/dhqrjk8wgjgk2cv2/export-citation/

Corio, M., & Lapalme, G. (1998). Integrated generation of graphics and text: a corpus study (pp. 63–68). Presented at the Workshop on Content Visualization and Intermedia Representation (CVIR’98), Montreal.

Corio, Marc, & Lapalme, G. (1999). Generation of Texts for Information Graphics. PROCEEDINGS OF THE 7TH EUROPEAN WORKSHOP ON NATURAL LANGUAGE GENERATION EWNLG’99.

Demir, S. (2008). TAIG: textually accessible information graphics. Proceedings of the 10th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and accessibility, ACM (pp. 313–314). Presented at the 10th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and accessibility, ACM, Halifax, Nova Scotia,.

Doush, I. A., Pontelli, E., & Son, T. C. (2010). Multimodal Presentation of Two-Dimensional Charts: An Investigation Using Open Office XML and Microsoft Excel. ACM Transactions on Accessible Computing, e(2), 1–50.

Ferrell, K. (n.d.). Describing Images for Enhanced Assessments. Retrieved March 6, 2012, from http://ncam.wgbh.org/experience_learn/educational_media/describing-images-for-enhanced

Ferres, L., Parush, A., Roberts, S., & Lindgaard, G. (2006). Helping People with Visual Impairments Gain Access to Graphical Information Through Natural Language: The Igraph System. Computers Helping People with Special Needs, 1122–1130.

Ferres, L., Verkhogliad, P., Lindgaard, G., Boucher, L., Chretien, A., & Lachance, M. (2007). Improving accessibility to statistical graphs: the iGraph-Lite system. Proceedings of the 9th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and accessibility (pp. 67–74).

Ferres, Leo, Parush, A., Li, Z., Oppacher, Y., & Lindgaard, G. (2006). Representing and Querying Line Graphs in Natural Language: The iGraph System. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 4073, 248–253.

Gao, J., Carrillo, R. E., & Barner, K. (2010a). Image Categorization for Improving Accessibility to Information Graphics. Proceedings of the 12th International ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and Accessibility. Orlando Florida.

Gao, J., Carrillo, R. E., & Barner, K. (2010b). Multimodal Access to Information Graphics: Improving Information Graphics Understanding for People with Visual Impairment. Presented at the RESNA Annual Conference, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Gould, B., O’Connell, T., & Freed, G. (2008). Effective Practices for Description of Science Content within Digital Talking Books. Retrieved March 6, 2012, from http://ncam.wgbh.org/experience_learn/educational_media/stemdx

Mittal, V. O., Carenini, G., Moore, J. D., & Roth, S. (1998). Describing complex charts in natural language: A caption generation system. Computational Linguistics, 24(3), 431–467.

Morgan, C. (2004). What is the role of diagrams in communication of mathematical activity? Mathematics education: exploring the culture of learning, 134.

Moskovitch, Y., & Walker, B. N. (2010). Evaluating text descriptions of mathematical graphs. Proceedings of the 12th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and accessibility (pp. 259–260). Retrieved from http://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=1878860

Santos-Bernard, D. (1994). Illustrations in Primary Mathematics Textbooks. British Society for Research into Learning Mathematics, 14(3), 99–105.

Research on Image Descriptions

Ault, H. K., Deloge, J. W., Lapp, R. W., Morgan, M. J., & Barnett, J. R. (2002). Evaluation of long descriptions of statistical graphics for blind and low vision web users. In K. Miesenberger, J. Klaus, & W. Zagler (Eds.), Computers Helping People with Special Needs (Vol. 2398, pp. 517–526). Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer Berlin Heidelberg. Retrieved from http://www.springerlink.com/content/dhqrjk8wgjgk2cv2/export-citation/

Beal, C. R., Rosenblum, L. P., & Smith, D. W. (2011). A Pilot Study of a Self-voicing Computer Program for Prealgebra Math Problems. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness, 105(3), 13.

Beal, C. R., & Erin. (2012, March 8). AnimalWatch-VI Suite: A Comprehensive Program to Increase Access to Mathematics for Students with Visual Impairments.

Beal, C. R., & Shaw, E. (2009). An online math problem solving system for middle school students who are blind. MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 5(4). Retrieved from http://jolt.merlot.org/vol5no4/beal_1209.htm

Beal, C., & Shaw, E. (2008). Working memory and math problem solving by blind middle and high school students: Implications for universal access. Proceedings of the 19th International Conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education, Las Vegas, March 2008, (Vol. 19, p. 6). Presented at the International Conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Ferrell, K. (n.d.). Describing Images for Enhanced Assessments. Retrieved March 6, 2012, from http://ncam.wgbh.org/experience_learn/educational_media/describing-images-for-enhanced

Gould, B., O’Connell, T., & Freed, G. (2008). Effective Practices for Description of Science Content within Digital Talking Books. Retrieved March 6, 2012, from http://ncam.wgbh.org/experience_learn/educational_media/stemdx

Moskovitch, Y., & Walker, B. N. (2010). Evaluating text descriptions of mathematical graphs. Proceedings of the 12th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and accessibility  (pp. 259–260). Retrieved from http://dl.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=1878860

Stevens, R. D., Edwards, A. D. N., & Harling, P. A. (1997). Access to Mathematics for Visually Disabled Students Through Multimodal Interaction. Human-Computer Interaction, 12(1), 47–92. doi:10.1207/s15327051hci1201&2_3

Diagrams

Arcavi, A. (2003). The role of visual representations in the learning of mathematics. Educational Studies in Mathematics, 52(3), 215–241.

Ferres, L., Parush, A., Li, Z., Oppacher, Y., & Lindgaard, G. (2006). Representing and Querying Line Graphs in Natural Language: The iGraph System. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 4073, 248–253.

Morgan, C. (2004). What is the role of diagrams in communication of mathematical activity? Mathematics education: exploring the culture of learning, 134.

seo