Re: Improving my teaching approach and/or sensitivity

Carolyn Arnold <4carolyna@...>

Thanks for clarifying about highlighting and clicking. The majority of the world is sighted, thinks and speaks accordingly, so for me it is important to have a clearer understanding.

Bye for now,


-----Original Message-----
From: Brian Vogel []
Sent: Thursday, February 4, 2016 4:53 PM
Subject: Re: Improving my teaching approach and/or sensitivity

On Thu, Feb 4, 2016 at 01:34 pm, Jean Menzies <> wrote:

I agree with the poster that a more appropriate use of language here would be to “select” something, etc. In other words, name the action/result, rather than referencing it through sighted jargon.


At this point I'm convinced that, on both sides [so to speak - this isn't a battle, it's an exchange of ideas] there is some talking past each other going on.

I will say this, then I am going to let it go. I often, probably more often than not, say "select" something when that's what I want someone to do. I do, occasionally, slip and say "click on" something when I would generally say "select" in the context of tutoring. It simply happens. I've been a classroom instructor, too, and you just find yourself occasionally (and, in that situation, almost exclusively) using the jargon of the majority, and when it comes to graphical user interfaces that majority is the sighted and the jargon relates to what they (I/we) do. I am, however, acutely aware of the context shift when I'm doing private tutoring and adjust accordingly.

All I'm saying is that I think it's essential to teach my students that should I, or anyone else assisting them, for that matter, say "click on" something that this means "select" something. I'm not doing anyone any favors by assiduously avoiding any incursion of the most common computer use terminology because my student so happens to be using a screen reader. I'm doing them a disservice if I don't make the connection clear between what they will hear far more commonly and what that means practically.

Now, from just what I've learned here, I'm actually shocked at how few people have ever been formally taught about context menus and their invocation via the right mouse click, whether one is using an actual mouse or alternate input device to generate it. These menus are things of beauty, and high efficiency, because they generally are:

1. presented as true menus, which virtually every screen-reader user on this forum has claimed they like best.
2. present only the things that are possible for the object type you have focus on (though there can be stippled out items if their actual use is not possible given the confluence of circumstances at that moment).

And, finally, so that I can have people storming all over me and decrying my breathing their air, it's about my making my students maximally functional in the computer world, not the JAWS world, as far as I'm concerned. That means making sure that they understand concepts that others do one way that they will do another, but so that when that concept is named that other way they absolutely know what that means functionally to them. You can't, and shouldn't, expect to operate in an assistive technology bubble.


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