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Access to PIVoT
Detailed Overview

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NCAM project staff worked with MIT to develop access solutions for the PIVoT Web site, a comprehensive on-line supplemental learning environment that augments MIT's introductory Newtonian physics class, one of the institute's most challenging freshman course offerings, even for students of MIT caliber. Using a sophisticated Web site and streaming digital video, PIVoT provides a unique 24-hour-a-day opportunity for students to conduct "virtual office hours" with the course's renowned physics professor, Walter Lewin. Students using PIVoT have access to a large amount of material ranging from a complete on-line textbook to a multimedia library containing a year's worth of lectures as well as dozens of tutorials centered around specific problems in the course. Non-MIT users may request a guest account at the PIVoT home page.

Building upon NCAM's ongoing research into Web-based multimedia accessibility, the Access to PIVoT project identified and addressed the needs of deaf and blind students in the design of user interface, navigation systems, and the presentation of video, text, illustrations, graphs and tables. NCAM helped MIT apply methods for improving Web-site layout and navigation, access to complex graphics, illustrations and equations, as well as to create captions and audio descriptions for the multimedia.

NCAM also used the Access to PIVoT project to develop a set of recommended practices for authors interested in creating accessible on-line educational resources. These guidelines, Making Educational Software and Web Sites Accessible: Design Guidelines Including Math and Science Solutions, are now available.

Visit the PIVoT Web site to see access solutions in use. Note that you must create a free user account before you can enter the site.

For more information, contact:

Geoff Freed
Project Manager
CPB/WGBH National Center for Accessible Media
WGBH Educational Foundation
125 Western Ave.
Boston, MA 02134
617 300-4223 voice and fax
geoff_freed@wgbh.org

Return to the Access to PIVoT home page.


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