Making Astronomy Accessible to the Blind

Innovators Developing Accessible Tools for Astronomy (IDATA) is funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) and brings together blind and visually impaired (BVI) and sighted high school students and their teachers to create a fully accessible astronomy data request, retrieval and analysis software tool. Students and teachers will engage in this 3-year project collaborating with astronomy and computing science professionals, and educators and education researchers in the design and development of the software as well as learning modules and tutorials that help students explore the role of computation in astronomy. 

IDATA will select 20 educators to participate in the 3-year effort; ten educators from within a 75-mile radius of Yerkes Observatory in southeastern Wisconsin (Tier 1 Teachers), and ten educators from across the U.S. and its territories (Tier 2 Teachers). Participating educators will be responsible for recruiting high school students to participate in the project as well. Eligible educators include those who teach the visually impaired, special education educators who work with BVI students, and astronomy, space science, physics, computer science, or technology educators working with students at the high school level.
Contact Kate Meredith at or 262-245-5555 ext. 836, or Tim Spuck at or 814-758-9527, if you have any questions.

Accessible Science Tags: 

  • Earth and Space Science