Providing Learning Support for Students with Mobility Impairments Undertaking Fieldwork and Related Activities

Strategies for Fieldwork

Facilitate the activity so that the student can participate in it

This includes both facilitating access to the location, and making the activity itself possible. The former might include seeking an alternative route, or providing some assistance for a wheelchair user to cross rough terrain, perhaps even by using slings. However, a balance has to be struck here, in remembering that the wheelchair user is a person, and not a package to be delivered at any cost! The latter includes, for example, providing a helper to take notes whilst the student makes observations, or to take samples or measurements, under the student's direction. Some note-taking aids might be useful for some students, including the use of a tape recorder. For students with multiple impairments voice transcription software with direct input into a word processor, such as IBM's ViaVoice, has been found useful by some people. For example, Gerald Gold, a quadriplegic anthropologist, reports using IBM ViaVoice and Dragon NaturallySpeaking software (Gold, 2001).

Page updated 14 December 2001

GDN pages maintained by Phil Gravestock