Sci-Voice Lab Solution
A few years ago, the idea of students with visual impairments accessing scientific laboratory equipment and performing advanced data analysis was considered impossible because most observations and manipulations of data were presented in a visual way.
Students who are blind or visually impaired have been underrepresented in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields due to the limitations of access to scientific curricula in the classroom. The new collaborative effort between GW Micro and Independence Science strives to provide a solution that will enable more blind and visually impaired students around the world to enter the STEM fields.
Research by Dr. Cary Supalo of Independence Science, and GW Micro has led to the development of an innovative set of text-to-speech solutions that serve as the missing link between science lab technology and students who are visually impaired.
This comprehensive and accessible bundle of products is known as the Sci-Voice Lab Solution, which includes the following hardware and software components:
- Vernier LabQuest (stand-alone data collection interface)
- Sci-Voice for LabQuest (text-to-speech plugin for LabQuest)
- Vernier Logger Pro (data collection and analysis application for PC)
- Window-Eyes (screen reader application for PC)
- Window-Eyes app for Logger Pro (enhances Logger Pro accessibility with Window-Eyes)
The Sci-Voice Lab Solution enables students who are blind to participate in hands-on learning activities with scientific data and curriculum. "We envision a classroom that exhibits the full integration of students with VI and reduces teacher anxiety about accommodating students during lab activities," said Dr. Supalo, who is himself a blind scientist. "My experience developing these access technologies has taught me that blindness need not be a barrier in the pursuit of one's ambitions."
LabQuest from Vernier is a portable hand held device that can be used to collect scientific data from over 75 different Vernier sensors. Sensors are available for a wide variety of scientific fields including Biology, Chemistry, and Physics to meet the needs of any educational curriculum.
LabQuest can be used for field activities or classroom experiments. The device can provide real-time data readings for experiment participation. LabQuest even contains a full featured periodic table!
Sci-Voice Access for LabQuest
Sci-Voice Access for LabQuest adds text-to-speech functionality to the LabQuest hand held device. Sci-Voice Access for LabQuest allows you to:
- Interact with the LabQuest using audible menus
- View interactive Periodic Table with 20 audible descriptors for each element
- Receive talking real-time data readings for experiment participation
- Choose from different languages including: Arabic, Catalan, Czech, Danish, German, Greek, Spanish, English, Estonia, Finnish, French, Hungarian, Italian, Latvian, Norwegian, Dutch, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Slovakian, Slovenian, Swedish, Turkish.
Logger Pro is award-winning, data-collection and analysis software that is student friendly, versatile and powerful.
Logger Pro's basic features include:
- Collect live data from more than 80 different sensors and devices.
- Manually enter data for graphing and analysis.
- Import data from Vernier interfaces including LabQuest.
- Read values and slope from graphs using examine and tangent line tools.
- Print graphs and data tables.
- Use a variety of data-collection modes as needed for your experiment: time-based data, selected events, events with typed-in entries, photogate, radiation counting, and more.
- Perform statistical analysis of data, including integrals, tangents, curve fits, and more.
Logger Pro includes support for a large number of languages including: Arabic, Czech, German, Greek, Spanish, English, French, Italian, Dutch, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, Korean, Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese.
Window-Eyes is a full featured and completely customizable screen reading application for Windows. Window-Eyes provides speech and Braille access to Windows based applications as well as to operating system utilities and interfaces. Window-Eyes is used by individuals who are blind to access their computers independently. Window-Eyes helps people who are visually impaired reach successful outcomes both in education and the work place. For more information about Window-Eyes, please visit the Window-Eyes product webpage.
Window-Eyes app for Logger Pro
The Window-Eyes app for Logger Pro is an accessibility bridge between Logger Pro and Window-Eyes. The app includes several accessibility enhancements that allows students using Window-Eyes to take full advantage of all of the features offered by Logger Pro.
The Window-Eyes app for Logger Pro can be downloaded from App Central at the following link: www.gwmicro.com/apps/logger_pro. Please note that the Window-Eyes app requires activation and customers will receive their activation file electronically by email after placeing an order.
Pricing and Ordering
To obtain pricing information or to order the Sci-Voice Lab Solution, please visit the Scientific Solutions online catalog page or call GW Micro at (260) 489-3671. For customers who already have Window-Eyes or one of the other components, each component of the Sci-Voice Lab Solution can be purchased individually. Additionally, a large number of Vernier sensors that are designed to collect various types of data, such as temperature, force, or other information are available for purchase through Independence Science.