Accessibility: Teaching Skills for the Future

Handouts Media

Scheduled at 10:30am in Cotton Creek II on Friday, November 22 (2019).

#29429

Speaker(s)

  • Tracy Christofero, Professor, Marshall University
  • Lori Howard, Associate Professor, Marshall University
  • Ralph McKinney, Jr., Assistant Professor, Marshall University
  • Brian Morgan, Professor and Chair, Marshall University

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 1-hr
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: All Levels
  • Type of session: General Conference

Summary

Industry is actively seeking people who can create accessible products, but they cannot find trained talent due to a significant skills gap. MU ACCESS helps students obtain those skills to fill that gap. SMART Devices and a SMART Dorm excite students about innovative problem-solving, foster real-world connections and support future employability.

Abstract

Industry is actively recruiting people who can create products everyone can use, including people with disabilities, but they cannot find trained candidates due to a significant skills gap. The MU ACCESS project fosters technology accessibility skills to fill that gap and support future employability of students. An interdisciplinary faculty team collaborated to incorporate technology accessibility courses in their curriculum to create learning and skill-building opportunities using SMART Device kits and a SMART Dorm room. SMART Device kits provide students the ability to innovate approaches to overcoming accessibility barriers. The SMART Dorm serves as a real-world accessibility lab. The student with a disability residing in the room hosts field trips and provides an overview of how these low-cost devices help make the room more accessible for him/her. Both approaches excite students about innovative problem-solving, foster real-world connections and support their employability.

Keypoints

  1. Industry is seeking employees who can create products everyone can use, including people with disabilities
  2. An Interdisciplinary faculty team provides technology accessibility skills to foster student employability
  3. The SMART Dorm and low-cost SMART Device kits are skill and learning aides most institutions can afford

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Accessible Course Design, Accessible Educational Materials, Assistive Technology, Teaching about Accessibility in Curriculum, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Tracy Christofero

Tracy Christofero is a Professor and Program Coordinator for the Technology Management degree program at Marshall University. Dr. Christofero teaches management of innovation and technology, IT strategies and strategic planning, quality and productivity methods, project management, and online information security courses. She was recipient of the Outstanding Graduate Advisor award, and in 2019, she was part of an interdisciplinary team earning the Hedrick Program Grant Award for Teaching Innovation. Early in her career, Dr. Christofero was Program Coordinator for a Special Education grant to teach teachers how to assist students with disabilities access technology. Prior to joining Marshall University, she spent 25 years as a technology project manager and consultant. Dr. Christofero earned a PhD in Information Science from Nova Southeastern University and a MS in Education from Indiana University. Her professional certifications include Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified Information Privacy Professional for Government (CIPP/G), and Six-Sigma Green Belt (SSGB). Dr. Christofero’s primary interests include accessible technology, project management and online learning.

Lori Howard

Lori A. Howard is an Associate Professor of Special Education at Marshall University and a recipient of the 2015 Pickens-Queen Award for Teaching Excellence. In 2019, she was part of an interdisciplinary team earning the Hedrick Program Grant Award for Teaching Innovation. Dr. Howard teaches courses related to introduction to special education, reading and math strategies for students with disabilities, inclusion, and disability perspectives. She earned a master’s degree in educational audiology from the University of Northern Colorado. She began her career in special education working with students who were deaf and the hearing impaired. Subsequently, she earned a doctoral degree from the University of Virginia in educational psychology. Dr. Howard’s current interests include accessibility, Threshold Concepts, and how institutions of higher education can support the education of college students with disabilities.

Ralph McKinney, Jr.

Ralph E. McKinney, Jr. Ralph E. McKinney, Jr. is an Assistant Professor of Management at the Brad D. Smith Schools of Business at the Lewis College of Business at Marshall University. Dr. McKinney authored a number of publications concerning cryptocurrency, economics, forensic business practices, human resource management, indigent criminal defense, and poverty. Dr. McKinney was recognized instructor for the Pearson NEIS Economics Insider Contest Instructor Award. In 2017, Dr. McKinney was awarded the Robert P. Alexander Award of Research Excellence and a member of the winning team for the Design for Delight Challenge. In 2019, he was part of an interdisciplinary team earning the Hedrick Program Grant Award for Teaching Innovation. Dr. McKinney holds degrees from Aston Business School at Aston University in Birmingham, England (DBA), Marshall University (MBA) and West Virginia State University (RBA). Additionally, he is a licensed Private Investigator.

Brian Morgan

Brian M. Morgan is Professor and Chair of the Computer and Information Technology Department at Marshall University. Professor Morgan was awarded the Pickens-Queen Award for Teaching Excellence in 2005. In 2019, he was part of an interdisciplinary team earning the Hedrick Program Grant Award for Teaching Innovation. Professor Morgan teaches web programming, mobile application development, and database design. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from Marshall University and a Master of Science degree in Technology Management from the Marshall University Graduate College. Prior to joining the faculty, Professor Morgan was Director for the Center for Instructional Technology at Marshall University.

Handout(s)