Uncontracted or Contracted Braille for Emergent Readers: A Pilot StudyBy Farnsworth, Charles, Jr.; RE:view, Vol. 38, No. 4, pp. 147-156
Publication Date: Winter 2007
Study explored the attitudes of teachers of students who are visually impaired or blind about the use of contracted versus uncontracted Braille for emergent readers. The study was undertaken in light of learning materials being produced predominantly in contracted-Braille format. The basis of the study was observations made at the W. Ross MacDonald School for the Blind in Ontario, Canada, and an 11-item questionnaire posted between the end of October and mid-December 2002 on the electronic listservs of three organizations for the blind and visually impaired. At the school, all Braille-reading students learned to read uncontracted Braille proficiently before being immersed in contracted Braille, and teachers unanimously stressed the importance of having materials available in uncontracted Braille for students who could not become proficient in contracted Braille. According to the 40 questionnaire responses received from teachers in Canada, the West Indies, and the United States, most respondents agreed that uncontracted Braille is beneficial in teaching computer keyboarding and early reading skills to emergent readers. The responses indicated a lack of agreement on early immersion in contracted Braille or the need to master contracted Braille to attain long-term academic success. Study limitations and implications for further research are discussed.
Published by: Heldref Publications (Website:http://www.heldref.org)
Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind and Visually Impaired (Web Site: http://www.aerbvi.org )