Technology for the Blind

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The Computer Training Program offers a number of training and evaluation services from novice to expert that can prepare a blind or vision impaired person to use a computer proficiently for their goals and interests. Technology for the blind courses are available for children, working age adults and seniors, as well as for teachers and rehabilitation professionals in the use of speech, large print, PDA’s, cellphones and Braille technology.

Training takes place in our state-of-the-art technology training facility on our campus in Newton, Massachusetts. Most of our instruction is individualized addressing the needs of the student, so whether you are new user, have just upgraded your system or need to learn a specific software, we can create a training program just for you.

We also offer computer training courses on-line through our distance learning program called CarrollTech. In addition to our individualized training programs, some group classes are offered throughout the year. Here are some examples of our technology for the blind classes:

Assistive Technology Assessments

A one day assessment can evaluate the best assistive technology solutions for an individual. Whether it is low vision approach that requires screen enlargement; a non-visual utilizing speech output; voice input with Dragon; scanning software; a personal notetaker or even a combination of devices, trying the devices is often the best method to determine what is most effective. For those who have never used a computer before and need more time to identify if they have the skills to learn applications a one to two week course can educate them in computer terminology and access methods.

Basic Computer Skills with JAWS or Zoomtext

This two week course provides basic training in the use of the Windows operating system, Internet Explorer to browse the Web, Outlook Express to send and receive email, Microsoft Word to write and edit documents as well as Talking Typing Tutor to improve typing speed and accuracy. All instruction is through the use of the JAWS For Windows screen reader or Zoomtext teaching the student keystrokes, navigation, how to access dialog boxes and to otherwise interact with a computer independently.

Chances are, you may have questions about living with blindness or low vision, if so, we are here to answer your questions.

MS Office Skills

This technology for the blind and visually impaired course is a must for those seeking employment, need to upgrade their skills for existing work or college students. You will learn all of the Microsoft Office Applications to be a truly independent computer user. Learn to use intermediate and advanced features of Word, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint and Internet Explorer as well as instruction in the use of scanners, printers, and telephone systems. Consumers also learn to apply their note-taking devices and improve their typing speed and accuracy. Seminars in web-based job searching, resume development, writing cover letters and interviewing are also provided.

Applicants must be current JAWS or ZoomText users, have a computer and email account at home and type 20 wpm. Class meets daily from 9 am to 5 pm for 6 weeks. Optional on-campus and off-campus internships in office support roles are available. Seventy percent of those who complete the program are working within one year. Call for the next start date.

Apple Voiceover and Zoom Training for OSX and iOS devices

With the opening of a new Apple Training Lab in February 2012, The Carroll Center has expand their technology training services to the growing number of blind and visually impaired people who use Apple products. Apple has added accessibility features that include Zoom, a screen magnification application and Voiceover, a screen reader application, to their newer products making them attractive to consumers with vision loss.

These technologies include the MacBook and iMac computers, iPhone, iPad 2 and iPod Touch. The Carroll Center will also train professionals who work with children and adults who are visually impaired.

Apple Mondays

Whether you currently use an iOS or Apple device or have one on your wish list, these monthly instructional workshops will help you become an independent user. If you have an iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, or even an Apple computer, you are sure to learn about new techniques and apps at the Carroll Center’s Apple Monday. These events are perfect for consumers and professionals who use speech, magnification, or Braille to interact with technology.

Computing for College

Strong written communication and computer skills are a necessity for students who attend college. In two- weeks, students advance their computer skills in internet access, email, and research, word processing tasks, and scanning with various formats. Students learn to search and download e-texts. Effective note taking skills are integrated into the classes. Demonstrations of web-based college management software will be provided.

Programs used include: MSWord, Outlook, Excel, Powerpoint & Kurzweil. Students should be current users of Windows with JAWs or Zoomtext software. Students should bring PDAs and/or laptop computers they will be using for college to this training. Sessions offered during the summer and in January. Call for details.

On-Site Training

If you cannot come to the Center for training and live within the Greater Boston area, training at your home, office or classroom can be provided when your system cannot be duplicated at the Center or if on-site will result in the highest level of effectiveness.

On-Line Training through CarrollTech

Because so many individuals find it difficult if not impossible to attend face-to-face instruction in the use of access technology, the Carroll Center offers instruction on line through our distance learning web site Both basic and advanced courses are available. Courses can be started at any time with access to the course content for twelve weeks from the date of registration. Most courses take about 30 hours to complete with a few courses taking less than six hours.

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  1. Pingback: » The Carroll Center for the Blind Receives Grant for Addition of New Apple Training Lab

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