Gro Aasen, Senior Adviser and PhD at Statped

Tactile symbols and schedules

Enhancing activity and observing the use of tactile schedules

This presentation will focus on descriptions and evaluations of how tactile symbols and schedules are used among seven children and adolescents who are blind. A special focus will be on how the children read their tactile schedules.

Tactile symbols and schedules are widely used for individuals with visual impairment and varying degrees of additional disabilities such as autism spectrum disorders (ASD), and intellectual disability. Schedules may give information of planned events throughout the day or an activity or work-session (e.g., writing or reading tasks, gymnastics). Schedules are also considered a useful tool for communication and to enhance activity. Schedules that present tactile information, as opposed to merely auditory, may give individuals who are blind increased possibilities of access to information or other things relevant to the individual.

In this session you will take part of studies showing how the availability of tactile symbols and schedules seems to increase the level of activity and the participation in school among pupils. Gro will also discuss how tactile schedules could cover functions such as increasing predictability, promoting a sense of agency and being used as an aid to promote communication. We hope that this session will give you new ideas of how to improve the use of tactile symbols and schedule.

Handout file (pdf, opens in new window)

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