Computer Programming Classes for the Visually Impaired- Call for Volunteers!

Vision-Aid is running an exciting  initiative to teach computer programming to the visually impaired. The demand has been strong and we are actively recruiting teachers and mentors to help us. Do you want to get invovled? Please read on!

Vision-Aid’s 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, and 3 more rounds of classes in 2017-18, we are happy to be back with a new course for Spring 2019. The program will run for 9 months in 2 semesters (Spring 2019 and Fall 2019)– with a short break in between Each session will be around 15-16 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.  

For students, 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. The Vision-Aid program will use material given to us by MIT Boston and other leading universities in USA. 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. One or two students will be paired with a teacher who will work with the students to guide them through the course material. 

Vision-Aid is pleased to offer this course free of cost to the students. For more details including two short videos of our amazing students, please see the link below: 

http://visionaid.org/news/236-applications-for-vision-aid-fall-semester-2018-programming-course-open-limited-enrollment-apply-soon

A call for volunteers!

We already have a committed and large team of volunteers (around 15) but since the demand for the course has been strong we are recruiting additional volunteers,  If you know Python programming and want to teach or assist in this exciting program, please join our team!  It will be one of the most rewarding experiences in your life – we say this based on the experiences of many! Time commitment will be around 4-5 hours/week and there is a lot of flexibility – you can put in time on weekends and evenings – when it suits you. Classes are taught  online over skype. You will be workign wiht a dynamic and experienced team that has done this many times before, and which  you will love being a part of. 

If interested, please fill in the application below ASAP and not later than 10th March.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1XGU1a7qjGBcejh_p8jP1qLH_AL233nflH5BVQSXjrbo/edit?c=0&w=1

FAQ:

What is the level of depth you have in mind for this course?

>> This is an introductory level course. So level is basic. 

I am relatively a beginners in Python, will you consider this sufficient?

>> Yes.  Please apply. We will give you all the needed training materials you and bring you up to speed so you can do your job well.  The most important qualification you bring to the table is your passion and commitment!

Roughly how many hours of prep required for the first time volunteer.?

>> Initially  – budget a few (maybe 4-6 hours)  this should be enough to warm up and get familiar. After that budget 4 hrs/week ongoing to teach the students and participate in a short weekly meeting for half hour. We run in a semester mode so you will have summer and winter breaks between roughly 10-week semestres. 

Can you give an idea on the course content.

The course offered by Vision-Aid is our own course, adapted from a free, publicly available class taught by Professor/Dr. Chuck from Univ of Michigan. However, Dr. Chuck also offers a similar course on Course Era. The link is below. Interested volunteers can view this course, even take it if they like, or we can share our own version of the course

https://www.coursera.org/learn/python

In addition to the course above, the following is also incorporated

https://www.py4e.com/

Vision-Aid also has comprehensive handbook for teachers that is made available to voluteers that can be used a reference on how to conduct the training, including how to help the visually impaired students set up the Python development environment and get started.

What is Vision Aid goal?

  1. Create a unique learning opportunity for all interested and qualified participants to learn a new skill (programming).
  2.  From the larger pool of participants, identify motivated students and encourage them to become life long learners in advanced topics via MooC’s. 

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