Towards the adoption of inclusive strategies for a non-sighted undergraduate student in an efl classroom: a case study
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DescriptionEstudio de caso sobre el uso de diferentes estrategias tecnológicas y socio-afectivas para potenciar el aprendizaje de un estudiante invidente en clases de inglés como lengua extranjera en una universidad mexicana. The main objective of this case-study was to understand which inclusive strategies— technological and/or socio-affective—tend to render a positive influence in the learning process of a non-sighted undergraduate student enrolled in an English as a foreign language programme in a Mexican private university. The inquiry focuses on one of the eight courses that constitute the programme. Vygotsky’s views and their effects in inclusive education founded the decisions taken regarding the implementations made to promote an inclusive environment that may lead the non-sighted learner (NSL) to a successful achievement of the course aims. On the one hand, adjustments within the technological area incorporated the use of assistive technology, optimizing the use of JAWS—written-to-audio texttranslator—inside and outside the classroom. On the other hand, adaptations within the socio-affective field included the encouragement of mediation practices, the incorporation of collaborative activities and the support of the NSL’s strengths. Data was gathered from different stakeholders, which included the NSL himself, his former and intervention-group teachers and peers, as well as external observers. Video-recordings, interviews, and questionnaires were the means used to attain the data. Two main conclusions may be drawn from the results obtained; first, that the mediation and collaborative practices incorporated during the study promoted positive attitudes on the class as a whole and especially on the target student, strengthening his self-esteem and, therefore, making his learning efforts more successful; second, that supplying the NSL with information in advance and optimizing his use of technological resources, provided him with egalitarian learning and performing conditions throughout the course. This paper also aims to highlight the need for further work regarding adaptations of textbooks and tests to make them more accessible to NSLs. Finally, some conclusions and recommendations are presented in hope that they inform teachers with non-sighted learners in their EFL classrooms.