Ajuwon, P. M., Meeks, M. K., Griffin-Shirley, N., & Okungu, P. A. (2016). Reflections of teachers of visually impaired students on their assistive technology competencies. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness , 110 (2), 128–134. doi:10.1177/0145482X1611000207

Journal Article

Ajuwon, P. M., Meeks, M. K., Griffin-Shirley, N., & Okungu, P. A. (2016). Reflections of teachers of visually impaired students on their assistive technology competencies. Journal of Visual Impairment & Blindness, 110(2), 128–134. doi:10.1177/0145482X1611000207

Tags

No age; No disability; Teacher survey; U.S. context

URL

https://www.afb.org/publications/jvib

Summary

Accommodation

In this study, the researchers summarized qualitative data from two previous studies (Zhou, Ajuwon, Smith, Griffin-Shirley, Parker, & Okungu, 2012; Zhou, Parker, Smith, & Griffin-Shirley, 2011) that reported quantitative data from surveys of teachers of students with visual impairments about teachers' assistive technology knowledge and skills. As such, teachers' perceptions about a variety of accommodations used by students with visual impairments were investigated.

Participants

The data set of 233 comments was summarized from 53 participants in the Texas (2011) study and 194 participants in the national (2012) study; some participants provided more than one comment. These participants from the studies were teachers of students with visual impairments. Demographic (gender and age) and professional experience (teaching years) data for these teachers were also reported.

Dependent Variable

Respondents' comments were obtained as part of two online surveys, which employed items seeking Likert-type responses and separate comments sections eliciting open-ended responses; the Likert ratings, yielding quantitative data, were analyzed and reported in other journal articles. The teachers' comments from each study were processed as separate pieces of qualitative data and received open-coding categorization; however, each study had similar resulting sets of categories.

Findings

The Texas study teacher comments were categorized into eight areas, including most commonly around their need for access to assistive technology training, followed by assistive technology proficiency and collaboration among professionals. The national study teacher comments were categorized into nine areas, including most commonly around their assistive technology proficiency, followed by their need for access to assistive technology training, and collaboration among professionals; the additional topic in the national study was equipment concerns with relatively few comments. Details of both studies' participants' individual comments were presented. Limitations of the study were reported, and future research directions were suggested.