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					           OPEN to
              ALL
Using MERLOT to teach History Research Methods

                               KENNESAW STATE
                                    UNIVERSITY




                              Elsa A. Nystrom
                             Professor of History

                                    Carol Pope
                               Assistant Director,
                        Disabled Student Services
Scholarship & Technology
    Scholarly materials on the web
       Enormous quantities
       Easily accessed by most
       Reliable & unreliable
    American Memory - MERLOT.org
       Used by Faculty:
            Live in classrooms
            Online classes




                                               Nystrom & Pope
                                  KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
Kennesaw State University
     Demographics
         Located north of Atlanta
         40 years old
         3rd largest undergraduate student body
         Less than 1/4 live on-campus
         Full-time employed commuters
         “Married with Children”




                                                     Nystrom & Pope
                                        KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
The Course that Changed
    Local History Research Methods:
     History 2275
      Required: History & Social Science ED
       Majors
      Objective;
           Teach students how to research & write an
            original paper
           Use primary documents (original sources)
                Letters and diaries
                Eyewitness accounts
                Newspapers and other publications
                More
      Outcome; an original paper
                                                       Nystrom & Pope
                                          KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
The Course that Changed
    Students choose appropriate topic for
     research
    Logistics
       4 trips to archives to locate primary sources
            Georgia Room - Cobb County Library
            The Atlanta History Center
            Carter Presidential Library
            NARA - Southern Region




                                                    Nystrom & Pope
                                       KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
A Popular Course…
 Students enjoyed the topics & field
  trips
 But…
    Classes are taught in evenings:
         Many students work full-time
         Many have small children requiring sitters
    High cost of fuel & time for the students
         Saturday morning trips still difficult
         Distance to facilities - from KSU only
         Some students drive over 1 hour to come to
          KSU
 And then…                                        Nystrom & Pope
                                      KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
A Point of Failure
One student enrolled who was legally
 blind

 Result;
   • Already in progress, the course could not change
   • The student had to drop the class
 Decision;
   • The course needed to be modified
       •   For commuting students
       •   For students with disabilities


                                                         Nystrom & Pope
                                            KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
    Going Online
 Choices
   Use of MERLOT sites
   Selection of 4 from various historical
    periods
   Online documents available
 Selected
   http://www.1704.deerfield.history.museum/i
    ndex.html
   http://www.canadianmysteries.ca/sites/robin
    son/home/indexen.html
   http://valley.vcdh.virginia.edu/
   http://ccbit.cs.umass.edu/lizzie/
                                              Nystrom & Pope
                                 KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
A Successful Course!
  Students enjoyed the content
  All 4 sites were heavily used
  Worked extremely well
     Commuting time & expense
     24/7 accessibility
          Working students
          Students with families or young children
  But…



                                                    Nystrom & Pope
                                       KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
There’s still a problem…
   None of the chosen sites were
    accessible for students with disabilities

    What I found:
         Proliferation of online courses & resources
         Many sites available for use
         Frequently not accessible for disabled students
         How little I knew about this problem
         I hadn’t solved the problem for any disabled
          students



                                                      Nystrom & Pope
                                         KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
What Could I Do About It?
    It started with help from Carol Pope
     who…
       Verified none of the selected sites were ADA
        compliant
       Contacted Virginia Center for Digital History
            VCDH agreed to make “Valley of the Shadow”
             site ADA compliant
       Explained ADA compliance to me




                                                   Nystrom & Pope
                                      KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
What is ADA compliance?
    Section 508 Rehabilitation Act
       Amended by Congress, 1998
       Applies to all Federal agencies
       All web pages must be Section 508
        compliant
            Eliminate barriers
            Make new opportunities available
            Encourage development of new technologies
       Access comparable to the access available
        to others - which means what?


                                                    Nystrom & Pope
                                       KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
          Issues
 Non-Federal Electronic Media
   Some sites do follow Section 508
   No current government regulation
 An ever-evolving world
   Rapid change
   New technologies
   Development always chasing the need
 Unless you check you will not know



                                            Nystrom & Pope
                               KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
      Challenges
 A wide variety of impairments
   Visual: low vision or no vision
   Hearing: deaf/hard of hearing
   Manual: varying degrees of physical ability
    limiting use of mouse/keyboard
   Cognitive: How the brain takes in the
    information to;
        Manipulate
        Memorize
        Organize
        Respond


                                             Nystrom & Pope
                                KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
Assistive Technology
  Visually impaired
     Screen Readers
          JAWS, Window Eyes, Hal
     Text Readers
     Display Enlargers
  Hearing impaired
     Voice recognition software
          Closed captioning, or text equivalent of
           sound
  Manual & Cognitive
     Dragon, ViaVoice
     Alternative Input Devices
  None are perfect
                                               Nystrom & Pope
     Complicated to learn & use KENNESAW   STATE UNIVERSITY
     Much slower access for users
        Resources
 World Wide Web Consortium
    Published; W3C Web Accessibility Initiative
    http://www.w3.org/WAI/
 Microsoft
    Suggestions provided for creating accessible
     documents
    http://www.microsoft.com/enable/
 MAGPIE
    Developed by the National Center for
     Accessible Media
    Freely available
    Supports Apple, Microsoft, and W3C
 Your in-house office for disabled
  students                               Nystrom & Pope
                             KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
  Making It Work
 Faculty
   Verify online resources are accessible
        Contact the Webmaster for information
   Are your online courses or resources…
        Meaningful regardless of color?
        Navigable without a mouse?
        Fully informational without images?
        Screen reader friendly?




                                                 Nystrom & Pope
                                    KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
Electronic Documents
  Provide:
     Text equivalent for all informative non-text
      element
     Synchronized equivalent alternatives for
      multimedia presentations
     Color information also available without
      color
     Row & column headers identified for all data
      tables
     Pages designed to prevent screen flicker
      (above or below 2 - 55 Hz)
  Check accessibility:
     http://www.colostate.edu/Dept/ATRC/tools.h
      tm
                                               Nystrom & Pope
                                  KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
               Web
 Use WebCT “open files in same
  browser window option”
 Inform when new frame or window
  opens
 Text explanation for complicated pages
 Content Compiler; allows creation of
  contiguous collection of course notes
 Screen reader friendly captions for
  video
 Text alternative for audio elements
 Common format, downloadable
  materials (PDF, RTF, TXT)              Nystrom & Pope

 Easy access for plug-ins or applets UNIVERSITY
                             KENNESAW STATE
         Common Software
 Word                             PowerPoint
     Format-style organization      Create the presentation in
     Hard page-breaks                Outline view
     Page numbering                 Add metadata
     Tabs & indents                 Check readability (font
     Word wrap                       size)
     HTML, PDF, RTF or TXT          High contrast design style
      equivalents                    Set and use “screen tips”
                                      for links
                                     Accessibility wizard:
                                      http://cita.rehab.uiuc.edu/
                                      software/office/


                                                            Nystrom & Pope
                                               KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
Why Do All This?
 Disability happens
   At birth
   An accident
   A disease
 Disability does not stop the desire
  to know & learn
 Disability could affect anyone you
  know…


                                      Nystrom & Pope
                         KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
Ellen Bomer
Survivor of the 1998 US Embassy Bombing, Nairobi,
Kenya




I could not see anything, darkness
completely engulfing me. At this point I
was bargaining with God to let me have at
least one eye. "I could get by with one
eye. That would be OK. Just please don’t
let me be blind!"



http://ellen-bomer.com/main.html
 Lenny McHugh
  Retinitis Pigmentosa, an eye disease that affects a person's
    night vision and peripheral vision. It is a genetic disorder



On six different occasions I was nominated to
receive the Governor's Most Outstanding
Handicap Employee of the Year Award. Up
until the time of my retirement, I was the
only employee to be presented with the Star
of Excellence Award on two occasions. This
is the highest award presented for
outstanding service. I can remember what
was said during the first presentation. The
Secretary of Transportation during the
presentation said "Lenny isn't getting this
award because of his disability. He is getting
it in spite of it."
              http://www.geocities.com/lenny_mchugh/
Michael
Chorost
Winner of the 2006 PEN/USA Book Award for Creative
Nonfiction


Dr. Michael Chorost (pronounced “kor-ist”) is an
internationally known authority on cochlear implants
and social issues raised by advances in medical
technology. He was born in New Jersey in 1964
with severe hearing losses in both ears due to an
epidemic of rubella. He didn’t learn to talk until he
got hearing aids at age 31⁄2. Those enabled him to
grow up speaking English more or less normally,
though, and he got a B.A. in English from Brown
and a Ph.D. in humanities computing from the
University of Texas at Austin.




http://www.michaelchorost.com/
              Todd
           Anderson
    C5 Quadriplegic, 1998 motor vehicle accident


Four years ago, Anderson, a 40-year-old
who lives in Derby, was on his way to
work at Bombardier Aerospace. He was
northbound on I-235 when his truck hit
black ice and rolled four or five times
down an embankment.

The accident left him a C5 quadriplegic,
paralyzed from the chest level down.

He eventually went back to work at
Learjet, but in Web site design and
graphic arts rather than as an electrical
engineer in the flight test facility.



                  http://www.toddman.com/
Denise
Arthrogryposis




Hi all my name is Denise. I am 25
years old, and I have a disability called
arthrogryposis. This disability involves
all four of my limbs. Arthrogryposis
means stiffness of the joints and
muscles.

I attend college part-time. I am taking
Human Services as my major.




http://www.geocities.com/freakydude1357/mycoolpage.html
Is the Problem Solved?
   Online resource as double-edged
    sword
     Wide selection of information
     Available 99.9% of the time
     Broad range of views
          Papers done on Lizzie Borden
     No guarantee of accuracy
     Sorting wheat from chaff
     Opportunities for plagiarism
          Using Turnitin
     Hit & miss ADA compliance
   Do your homework
                                                  Nystrom & Pope
                                     KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY
       Questions?
 For electronic copies:
    Email: mailto:enystrom@kennesaw.edu
 Other web sites:
    http://learnware.uwaterloo.ca/projects/History
    http://guides.library.fullerton.edu/historians_tool
     box/index.html




            Thank You!


                                                   Nystrom & Pope
                                      KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY

				
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