IBEX Special Needs - Informal

Overview
Program Element / Activity Title:
IBEX Special Needs - Informal
E/PO Project Name:
IBEX
Contact Information:
Program Element / Activity Website:
Program Element / Activity Partners within NASA:
IBEX
Short Description:

This project created resources about the IBEX mission and heliophysics in the form of tactile materials for people with visual impairments and online games and activities for people with visual impairments.  The purpose of this project was to make IBEX and heliophysics materials available to people who might not otherwise have access to similar resources.  The tactile materials were all distributed in 2011 at no cost through the Adler Planetarium to interested educators.

Program Element / Activity Status
Please list products / materials that will result / have resulted from this program element / activity:
Name: IBEX tactile products
URL: http://www.ibex.swri.edu/planetaria/tactiles.shtml
Status: Completed
Name: IBEX online games and activities
URL: http://www.ibex.swri.edu/games/index.shtml
Status: Completed
Audience Metrics
Who is the primary audience of your program element / activity?:
Who is the secondary audience of your program element / activity?:
Evaluation
National Priorities and Coordination Approaches as Articulated in CoSTEM:
  • Better Serve Groups Historically Under-represented in STEM Fields
What are the goals and objectives of your program element / activity?:
The primary goal of the IBEX E/PO program is to communicate the scientific goals and results of the IBEX mission to the public in various locations and formats in ways that make the science, technology, engineering and math relevant to the learner: IBEX E/PO Goal 1: Communicate IBEX science results and mission goals to multiple audiences in multiple formats. (Please see the attached summative evaluation report on pages 15-16 and 19-20)
What is the design of the evaluation process for your program element / activity?:
The tactiles were tested with users in the formative stages of development; an accessibility expert from the National Federation of the Blind tested the usability of the online games and activities for people with visual impairments. As part of the summative evaluation effort, tactile users were interviewed. (Please see the attached summative evaluation report on pages 15-16 and 19-20)
What are the main impacts of your effort to date and how do they correlate to the project's goals and objectives:
As part of the evaluation, five tactile product users were interviewed or surveyed about the products. They gave the materials high marks (from 4.4-5.0 on a 1-5 scale). Evaluation participants ranged from a teacher of visually impaired students looking for current materials, to a ham operator interested in Sun-related information, a person running a summer program for middle school students, and a person involved with a Masters Program for teachers of people with visual impairments. One of the users shared the tactile products with an orchestra conductor, and another with a Physics professor. One respondent commented that the products are “an excellent example of how you can interface graphics if you do it right.” Others commented that the products were such a “work of art.” They suggested that these materials be more widely produced and advertised through the National Federation of the Blind. (Please see the attached summative evaluation report on pages 15-16 and 19-20)