Sociolinguistic Perspectives in Education: Episode 39

Kezia (Host) - Good morning everyone and welcome to the Linguistic Podcast. I am your host
Kezia and today we have myself, Juliana, Jake, Nicole, John, Kevin and Leah. We wanted to
have a Q+A session surrounding the topic of utilizing braille within Adelphi University and
Garden City. Throughout this session we will each be asking questions pertaining to the topic
and sharing our thoughts on the questions asked. Our first question will come from Juliana.

Question #1
Juliana- Where do you think Adelphi and Garden City can utilize braille?
Kezia- Public libraries in garden city could introduce braille. This can be done through the books
being offered. A section could be dedicated to having books in braille so that both children and
young adults aren’t excluded from the conversation of reading a book. I believe this is especially
important for children as their early development can really impact the way they learn in the
Jake- I agree with Kezia’s points about including braille in libraries. It must be overwhelming
and even slightly isolating to not be able to see and have to navigate a place that does not offer
anything in your language. It is also very important for all students to feel comfortable at campus
so providing this feature to braille students at Adelphi will help them feel more included and
Nicole- It would be great, but we have to think about the cost as well. Adelphi would have to set
aside a good amount of funds, but it absolutely should be done. People who are not visually
impaired should be able to have services in all buildings.
John- The dining hall could use more braille accessibility on menus and with certain shop
Kevin -I feel that Adelphi and Garden City can utilize braille by having computers or laptops that
have braille, so they can type papers and look up questions. The computers or laptops would also
be voice activated so that those with visual impairments can hear what they typed or looked up.
This will make technology accessible to those with visual impairments.
Leah- I believe that Braille should be incorporated into the design of the Universities website
and other digital platforms to give students with visual impairments equal access to online

Question #2
John- Why is it important for a college campus like Adelphi to be braille accessible?
Kezia- Introducing braille to college campuses allows students with visual impairments to feel
included. Not only would they be allowed to read everything at their disposal, but it would also
open conversations pertaining to the topic. For instance, it could be discussed how to lessen the
price for textbooks with braille as they have been found to be more expensive. Utilizing braille
also gives these students more options to choose from in terms of the colleges that they can
Jake- I believe that it will allow students with visual deficiencies to be more comfortable around
campus when they are able to read and understand their surroundings better.
Nicole- If Adelphi can not provide for all students it is depriving certain students of a higher
education. Allowing students to feel comfortable at school is the only way to cultivate a place of
Juliana- I believe utilizing braille at Adelphi is super important. This is important because there
are students who attend the university who may have visual impairments. This would make
traveling around campus and communicating around campus easier for these students and allow
them to feel more comfortable with their surroundings.
Kevin- Making Adelphi braille accessible would be vital for Adelphi because there are a lot of
people out there that suffer from visual impairments so it is up to Adelphi to be able to provide
access for those students in the case that they go to Adelphi. braille will also allow the students
with visual impairments to have access to the same material in class that other students have.
Leah- Implementing braille into a college campus is so important because it can empower
students with visual impairments to navigate the campus independently, read course materials,
and participate in academic activities, without relying on others for assistance. This enhances
their independence, builds their self esteem and encourages them to pursue their academic and
career goals.

Question #3
Kezia- Do you believe teachers should make an effort to learn how to read braille?
Juliana- Yes I agree that teachers should make an effort to learn how to read braille. This can
help students with visual impairments and make them feel more comfortable and accepted in
their classroom and environment.
Jake- Absolutely! If teachers make efforts to learn braille then this would allow students to relate
more to the teachers and complete assignments in their own language. We can relate this to how
we learned about translanguaging, in which students utilize more than one language to process
their ideas. Students could use braille to communicate some of their ideas that they don’t fully
know or are not fully familiar or confident with in English. This would build mastery skills in
both languages and provide efficiency too.
Nicole- I totally agree. Teachers should encourage all types of learning which absolutely includes
braille. There is much to learn as a student as well as understanding alternate kinds of language
and inclusivity. Everyday lives could be changed by a teacher's use of braille, and including
braille allows a whole different type of student to grow. The more diversity in varieties of
learning will always be a positive thing.
John- Teachers should definitely have some form of understanding for braille. Even if they are
not fluent, it expands their horizons on braille and they also build an understanding that the blind
have. As well as this, they should have a background understanding of blind communication
forms and other ways to communicate with these students and people.
Kevin- I agree with everyone that teachers should make an effort to learn how to read braille
because it will allow the students with visual impairments to get the same education as the other
students. For example, When handing out classwork or exams, the teachers should provide
braille for the visually impaired students, so that they can have the same education as everyone
Leah- I love the idea of teachers learning braille! By learning braille, teachers can better
understand the challenges and experiences that their students with visual impairments face on a
daily basis. This can also encourage teachers to establish better relationships between students
and teachers as there will be a deeper level of communication between them.

Question #4
Jake- If these features were applied at Adelphi, how can this help us understand braille?
Juliana- Going off of what everyone said I agree as well. Being more conscious is super
important to help these students feel more comfortable and more accessible to them.
Kezia- I believe introducing braille to Adelphi would allow us to become more conscious of the
fact that braille is not as accessible as it should be. With this in mind, by being more aware of the
the issues surrounding braille, students would likely want to help with the cause in make braille
more accessible elsewhere, and may want to learn how to read braille themselves
Nicole- Having clear visual signs with braille could actually help students learn the language. By
constantly seeing braille in daily life students may begin to associate letters with the
corresponding braille signs.
John- As students we would be able to understand the struggles that the blind face every day.
Unfortunately, most do not understand how difficult it is for these students to learn the same way
we do via readings and texts. This is beyond just knowing braille in general, but the struggle that
these students and individuals have on a daily basis.
Kevin- If they create signs where the braille is below the words that are being said, we can
kind’ve burn it into our memory everytime we see it. We also start to notice how vital it is to
provide braille for those who are visually impaired. Imagine if all the words and signs that show
how to get to a location disappeared, we would be completely confused as to where to go.
Leah- Implementing braille into our school would also just foster empathy and understanding by
other students and faculty on campus. Individuals without visual impairments can gain a greater
appreciation for challenges faced by their peers who do have visual impairments.

Question #5
Nicole - Do we think that the faculty of Adelphi would initially support the addition of braille on
Juliana- I feel that the faculty of Adelphi would support the addition of braille on campus. After
being more educated these teachers would feel more comfortable expressing their knowledge
using braille and can be more accessible and helpful towards students with visual impairments.
Kezia- I feel as though after being educated on the matter then the faculty would begin to show
support. People tend to ignore issues due to not being properly informed on the situation and
how it is affecting a certain group. Due to this, if the faculty are enlightened on why braille needs
to be more accessible and how braille being hard to come by has negatively impacted the
visually impaired community, I believe some would be on board with the idea of integrating it on
the campus.
Jake- Yes, I believe that the faculty should support the addition of braille on campus. It is
important for the Adelphi faculty to be both inclusive and diverse, so this should be vital as a
John- I think it would be a bit difficult in the beginning for some professors to get on board with
but after a while and they learn about braille and its importance, they will grow to accept its use
on campus. At the end of the day, it is not hurting anyone and would only help those who need it.
Why not support such a change that is for the better of the school and the community?
Kevin- I think that the faculty will support the addition of braille on campus because all the
Adelphi faculty that I met have always been nice. So, I believe that they will be willing to
implement this change at our campus. Adelphi also has a lot of other programs that help students
with disabilities so they will definitely be supportive of this idea.
Leah- I think it will definitely take some getting used to, but ultimately, by learning more about
it, faculty would be open to the addition of braille on campus. The university can offer courses,
workshops, and other training sessions to help faculty understand and connect to the idea of it

Question #6
Leah- What are some potential challenges for incorporating braille into Adelphi University?
Juliana- One challenge we face is awareness. I feel like there are not many people on campus
who are aware of braille and where braille is located for what we have. Students also don't
realize that there are students with visual impairments
Kezia- I believe one challenge we might face in trying to incorporate braille into Adelphi
University is convincing authoritarians to do so. This is the case because a lot of people no
longer see a need for braille due to the availability of audio books and voice technology. Without
realizing how much reading is necessary to stimulate brain activity, it is likely that people will
not see braille as necessary.
Jake- Students with visual impairments already deal with a multitude of challenges so it should
not be an issue for Adelphi University to challenge themselves and incorporate braille into their
campus so all people feel included and comfortable .
Nicole- I agree. Many might argue that braille is not necessary and those who need it will have
separate accommodations.
Kevin- Cost of implementing and putting braille on campus
John- A big challenge the school would face would be the cost. In order to educate the teachers
and implement it into buildings, it would take a lot of funding by the school which they might
find challenging to come up with. This may lead to the school cutting other funding in other
programs. As well as this, getting everyone on board with it may be a challenge.

Question #7
Kevin- How does Adelphi and Garden City make sure that braille is accessible to those with
visual impairments?
Juliana- Adelphi could incorporate braille more throughout the school. There are a few places
you may see braille on campus but it should become more of an awareness and incorporate more
braille throughout campus.
Kezia- I know that for Adelphi, some of the rooms on campus have braille near the entrance of
the door so that students can know the room number they are at.
Jake- I also believe that a good amount of buildings and stores and restaurants in Garden City
also offer the names or address numbers in braille on labels outside the entrance.
Nicole- Adelphi does also have a Learning Resource Program and a Bridges to Adelphi Program
which offers comprehensive and personalized services to students with visual impairments.
Braille is accessible within both of these programs.
John- Adelphi could do self-checks on all their buildings and hold themselves accountable when
it comes to assuring themselves they are being held to the proper standard of listening to their
rules. They could also ask people from other institutions or facilities with blind accessibility to
make sure they are doing everything right and ask them for places of improvement around
Leah- I agree with what everyone mentioned about Adelphi having braille signs and labels on
some of the rooms and buildings, but they can definitely make sure to include braille in more
places on campus and even online resources. It is important to make braille as accessible as
possible so that students don't feel limited as to what they can do on campus and academically.