Communication

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Exhibit Design Relating to Low Vision and Blindness Summary Report

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January 2011

Introduction

Historically, museums have displayed their collections for the visiting public primarily through visual means. Most often the objects are located behind glass or other barriers; and if not, clearly the message is to “look and not touch”. While audio tours have been a recent addition to the museum scene, the absence of descriptive information about the objects or exhibits themselves have proved inaccessible to for persons with visual impairments and do not provide an equivalent experience that is available to the sighted public.

Tactile Mapping for Cultural and Entertainment Venues

Exhibit Design Relating to Low Vision and Blindness:

Tactile Mapping for Cultural and Entertainment Venues

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This paper has been supported by the National Center on Accessibility, the National Park Service and the U.S. Access Board through Task Agreement J2420070133 under Cooperative Agreement H0500000011.

by Steven Landau, President
Touch Graphics, Inc.

Research on Effective Use of Tactile Exhibits with Touch Activated Audio Description for the Blind and Low Vision Audience

Exhibit Design Relating to Low Vision and Blindness:

Research on Effective Use of Tactile Exhibits with Touch Activated Audio Description for the Blind and Low Vision Audience

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This paper has been supported by the National Center on Accessibility, the National Park Service and the U.S. Access Board through Task Agreement J2420070133 under Cooperative Agreement H0500000011.

by Rebecca Fuller and William R. Watkins, RAF Models, Inc. 

What Visitors with Vision Loss Want Museums and Parks to Know About Effective Communication

Exhibit Design Relating to Low Vision and Blindness:

What Visitors with Vision Loss Want Museums and Parks to Know about Effective Communication

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This paper has been supported by the National Center on Accessibility, the National Park Service and the U.S. Access Board through Task Agreement J2420070133 under Cooperative Agreement H0500000011.

By  Beth Ziebarth, Director
Smithsonian Institution Accessibility Program

Introduction

“ . . . our appreciation of our surroundings is multisensory, and . . . touch makes an important contribution to our well-being as well as our ability to understand and relate to the material world” (Pye 2007).

Effective Communication in Parks and Recreation

A woman walks to the front of the room and begins to communicate in American Sign Language. The hearing participants look at each other in confusion. Worry is displayed on each person's face as they wonder how will they understand the information presented in the class. For many people with visual, auditory, or cognitive impairments, this scenario can be a daily event. Effective communication is essential for an individual to be able to participate and benefit in programs and activities.

Becoming a Resilient Family: Child Disability and the Family System

By C. Amber Havens

“…it is not the child’s disability that handicaps and disintegrates families; it is the way they react to it and to each other” (Dickman & Gordon, 1985, p. 109).

You're Here...Now What? Making Self-Advocacy Work For You in Recreation Settings

By C. Amber Havens

What's worse? Planning a great outing with your family and friends at the local bowling alley only to find out that you can't get your wheelchair to the lanes or educating the owner of the local bowling alley about your disability and the accommodations you are entitled to by law, as a person who has the right to bowl? While finding out that a recreational hotspot is not accessible and doing nothing about it is a daily event for some people - others are taking the matter into their own hands to become their own advocate, to fight for what is legally theirs and to educate a public that often turns its eyes away from the civil rights movement of the disability community.

Disney Introduces Handheld Captioning

How do you caption a moving amusement ride? Use technology. That’s what the folks at Walt Disney World Resorts did.

Effectively communicating the story and message of moving amusement rides has long been a challenge for the amusement park industry. In many moving narrative attractions, such as Peter Pan’s Flight, it’s a small world, Pirates of the Caribbean and Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin, fixed captioning systems are not always effective as the ride is often moving too fast to read the captions. So the Disney engineers put wireless technology to work and developed a synchronized handheld captioning system.

The Susquehannock Case at the State Museum of Pennsylvania

The Susquehannock Case in the Archaeology Gallery at The State Museum of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg, PA, is a complex case. It contains approximately 100 artifacts, which are some of the best Native American artifacts in the museum’s collection. Only one artifact, the breastplate, could not be exhibited and was modeled because of its deteriorated state.

The exhibit tells the story of the Susquehannock, a lost people, from the 16th Century to the 18th Century spanning five historical periods. The Susquehannock migrated from northern Pennsylvania into the Lower Susquehanna Valley and subsequently traded with the newly arrived Europeans. Many of the objects on display show the various stages of their culture. The Susquehannock culture came to an end in 1763 when the Paxton Boys from Harrisburg became outraged by stories of native atrocities against white settlers, destroyed and killed the Native American residents in the settlement, Conestoga Indian Town.

Access at Mission San Luis

Mission San Luis, a National Historic Landmark site located in Tallahassee, Florida, was one of more than 100 mission settlements established in Spanish Florida between the 1560s and 1690s. Between 1656 and 1704, more than 1,400 Apalachee Indians and Spaniards lived at the mission. San Luis was a principal village of the Apalachee Indians and home of one of their most powerful leaders. San Luis was also the Spaniards' westernmost military, religious, and administrative headquarters. In 1983, the State of Florida purchased the property where the mission was located and began the research necessary to begin to present its story to the public. This story has been developed by painstaking archaeological excavations as well as through the translation of 17th- and 18th-century documents from Spanish archives. San Luis is the most thoroughly documented and archaeologically investigated mission in the Southeast.