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A. M. Howard, HumAnS Lab., Georgia Inst. of Technol., Atlanta, GA, USA
Chung Hyuk Park, HumAnS Lab., Georgia Inst. of Technol., Atlanta, GA, USA
S. Remy, Comput. Sci. & Eng. Dept., Univ. of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN, USA
The robotics field represents the integration of multiple facets of computer science and engineering. Robotics-based activities have been shown to encourage K-12 students to consider careers in computing and have even been adopted as part of core computer-science curriculum at a number of universities. Unfortunately, for students with visual impairments, there are still inadequate opportunities made available for teaching basic computing concepts using robotics-based curriculum. This outcome is generally due to the scarcity of accessible interfaces to educational robots and the unfamiliarity of teachers with alternative (e.g., nonvisual) teaching methods. As such, in this paper, we discuss the use of alternative interface modalities to engage students with visual impairments in robotics-based programming activities. We provide an overview of the interaction system and results on a pilot study that engaged nine middle school students with visual impairments during a two-week summer camp.

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Index Terms:
teaching,computer aided instruction,computer science education,control engineering computing,control engineering education,educational robots,handicapped aids,haptic interfaces,human computer interaction,robot programming,middle school student,auditory interaction tool,haptic interaction tool,visually impaired student,robot programming activity,engineering,robotics-based activities,K-12 student,computer-science curriculum,robotics-based curriculum,educational robot interface,alternative teaching methods,alternative interface modalities,interaction system overview,Robot sensing systems,Haptic interfaces,Visualization,Programming,Collision avoidance,Educational robots,robotics.,Education,haptic I/O,functional programming
A. M. Howard, Chung Hyuk Park, S. Remy, "Using Haptic and Auditory Interaction Tools to Engage Students with Visual Impairments in Robot Programming Activities," IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 87-95, Jan.-March 2012, doi:10.1109/TLT.2011.28
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