Assistive Technology

Spring, 2002. MW 2:30-4. 320 Soda Hall

Preferred contact method is in bold.

Instructor: Jennifer Mankoff EECS Department, 681 Soda, (W)+1 (510) 643-4205 (F)3-5775
Office hours: M 4-5pm, Th, 3:30-4:30pm, 681 Soda

TA: Hesham Kamel EECS Department, 525 Soda, (W)+1 (510) 643-7354
Office hours: Tue. 3-5pm, Wed. 1-2pm 525 Soda

Other class resources include the Newsgroup (ucb.class.cs294-4) and the class Swiki , an editable web page where you can post project suggestions, and information about yourself

Course Description

This class will focus on research in the area of assistive technology. We will begin with a discussion of the impact of disability policy on technology. The majority of the course will focus one by one on the technologies that have been developed and are being investigated to support people with disabilities. For example, we will talk about memory aids, a study of optimal font size and color for people with dyslexia, word-prediction aids, a blind-accessible drawing program, and sign-language recognition. We will also discuss some of the factors that cause technologies to transition from assistive to mainstream and vice-versa and how this impacts cost and other factors. And we will discuss the pros and cons and infrastructure involved in supporting mainstream computer applications rather than creating new ones from scratch. Finally, we will discuss some of the barriers and requirements in testing software for accessibility.


Students will be expected to do volunteer work in the local disabled community during one to two weekends of the start of the semester. This course has a project component, where students will design, implement, and test software for people with disabilities. Students will also write a report on the history of a specific technology used by people with disabilities.

Syllabus , Readings , and other Interesting Information


Prerequisites for this class are: It is recommended that you contact the instructor if you are interested in taking this class.