David Rose, Ed.D.
U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs (Grant Number: H327P040003 )
Students with sensory and other print disabilities must be able to access instructional materials in a timely manner. The National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard (NIMAS) Development Center project is the direct outcome of the work CAST led (endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education in July of 2004) to develop a national instructional materials standard file format. The standard is intended to guide the production and electronic distribution of flexible digital instructional materials such as textbooks so they can be more easily converted to Braille, text-to-speech, and other accessible formats.
The goal of the project is to provide national leadership to extend the development, maintenance, and large-scale implementation of the standard. The project will identify technological advances and pedagogical research that will improve the standard in a cost-effective and timely manner. Contributing to the project are publishers, disability advocates and researchers, textbook adoption organizations, alternate format repositories, assistive technology developers, states, educators, and parents. Additionally, the project will build the capacity of the NIMAS Technical Assistance Center to implement the adoption of NIMAS by states and other entities.
By strengthening and deepening the technological, research, and practical foundations of NIMAS, the Center contributes to the knowledge base of how to leverage flexible digital technologies to better support the teaching and learning of all students, especially those with disabilities. The Center will also inform educational publishers about best practices in developing materials that are designed to meet the needs of students with disabilities, and will create a set of common standards and processes that will hasten development and delivery of these materials in a more cost-effective and timely manner.
Watch a short video, with accompanying transcript, describing NIMAS: http://idea.ed.gov/explore/view/p/%2Croot%2Cdynamic%2CVideoClips%2C8%2C
Download a PPT presentation, with accompanying transcript:
Access additional information about the NIMAS centers