Computer Programming Classes for the Visually Disadvantaged
Vision-Aid is running several exciting new initiatives to teach computer programming to the visually impaired – both in India and in the Boston area.
Current programs include:
Python programming classes
Vision-Aid is back with an exciting program to teach Python programming. After successfully completing a pilot for teaching computer programming for the visually impaired in 2016, we are thrilled to offer an even more comprehensive program in 2017.
The Vision-Aid program uses material provided by Dr. Charles "Chuck" Russell Severance, Associate Professor the University of Michigan. We are profoundly grateful to Dr. Chuck , the University of Michigan and Coursera. Our visually impaired students who learn programming from his highly accessible, universally popular course “Programing for Everyone” taught via CoureEra, which is rated by Class Central to be one of the top 20 MOOCs in the world!
The program will run for 9 months in three sessions – beginner, intermediate, advanced. Each session will be 12 weeks long. During this program, the students will be introduced to computer science and programming concepts using Python, one of the most popular languages for getting started with computer programming.
No prior computer programming experience is necessary but certain pre-requisites do apply. Vision-Aid will conduct an assessment and enroll students at the appropriate level.
Students in this Vision-Aid program will learn from the experts in the field using the best online learning resources. The classes will be offered over Skype. Each student will be paired with a teacher who will work with the student to guide them through the course material.
Vision-Aid is pleased to offer this course free of cost to the students. However, each admitted student will be expected to pay an advance deposit of Rs. 500. If the student attends classes regularly and completes the 12-week module, the deposit will be fully refunded. The purpose of the deposit is to encourage students to stay committed to the course and complete it. There is no minimum passing grade required for the refund – we only expect regular and sincere participation to be eligible for the full refund.
We believe in training the students so they can be lifelong learners, and reach their highest potential. We encourage and guide our students to participate in Hackathons such as the Shaastra, IIT Madras Tech Festival in Chennai. Students, who complete the course, will be eligible to participate in a hackathon for the visually impaired, at the Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai (all travel and lodging expenses will be taken care of). Vision-Aid will also provide scholarships to qualified students, to cover the cost of completing certification for a programming course online from MIT. (For a short film about the 2017 hackathon in IIT, please click on the link below)
A call for volunteers
HTML / Web programming workshop in Boston
Vision-Aid is excited to announce that in partnership with Our Space, Our Place - a Boston based nonprofit, we will be supporting a one week programming workshop for blind students from the Boston (and other regional) public school systems.
The coding camp will take place from July 10 – 14 in Microsoft’s NERD center in Cambridge, MA. It will run from 9:30 AM to 2:30 PM daily.
The visually impaired students in the class will be 14-21 years in age. Most of them enter the class with no prior knowledge of HTML/CSS, and will leave the week-long workshop with the skills and tools they need to build their own web sites.
We need a few volunteers skilled in HTML & CSS to support this class, as teaching assistants (TA’s) to support the class. Prior experience in teaching the visually impaired (via other Vision-Aid courses, or otherwise) is desirable but not required. Experience in HTML/CSS, and the required time commitment for this workshop are the key requirements.
If interested, please fill in the application below ASAP and no later than May 22nd.