Today a student with severe visual impairment has a serious problem of access to the educational process and to educational material:
he/she can not see the class table, therefore cannot attend the course,
he/she has difficulty / cannot read the books.
The above, have obvious effects on integration, access to knowledge and the right to learning and education. We want to change this.
The aim of ICStudy (I Can Study) project is to help students to:
a) be able to see what the teacher / professor writes at the interactive whiteboard and
b) read books in digital format (pdf). In this way, pupils / students can have access to knowledge, integrate and participate meaningfully in school life, far from exclusions.
The application ICStudy processes the image of an interactive table using top (and free) real time video processing technology. Therefore, on the computer screen appears, in an understandable manner by the student (high contrast enhancing contours of objects, etc.) information from the board. The result is that the student can see what is written or designed at any time in the interactive whiteboard.
In order to attend the course it is required:
a) the existance of an interactive whiteboard in the classroom.
b) the teacher's computer to be connected to the local network
c) the student should have on his desk a computer connected to the local network and
d) the installation of the application ICStudy in the student’s PC
The ICStudy addressed to every student who has severe visual impairment. Due to the fact that the implementation of the project does not depend on language, the application can be applied in many languages and countries, since SciFY intends to offer the application for free and in open source, so that everyone can utilize / develop it.
We were asked to create a solution for a high school student with vision impairments so she could attend her courses in the classroom, as her classmates did. The student had passed the exams needed to attend an experimental high school, but she was unable to actually attend the courses! (In order to protect the student's identity, we will not mention more information).
We also noted that in Greece there are few high schools that can adapt to visually impaired people's needs.
We took the responsibility…...and managed to:
Develop a solution
Offer the hardware and software of the project to the highschool, having already made two tests, one in a non-educational environment and one in the classroom, with positive results
Share our knowledge and our experience, so far:
-Presented the application in a conference for assistive technologies.
-Present the project in a Greek University
4. Continue to improve and evolve the project, wishing and encouraging its installation in every school that has an interactive whiteboard making all students equivalent partakers of knowledge without exceptions and limitations.
5. Complete the second part of the application after a funding we received by the ‘Greek Free/Open Source Software Society (GFOSS)’ from EL/LAK and we have managed to install it at KEAT school for the blind