Exploring the Efficacy of AI Reading Technologies for Blind Parents and their Children

Despite advances in reading technologies for people who are blind or visually impaired (BVI), BVI parents still experience inequitable access, particularly when it comes to reading with their sighted children. This is concerning for many reasons, just one being that parent-child co-reading is critical to childrens’ early literacy skills development and long-term student success. We will observe approximately five BVI parents as they co-read with their children, after which we will ask them to engage in a narrative retelling of the story. From these data, we will report on (1) turn-taking patterns between parents, children, and reading technologies, (2) macro- and microstructures of narrative retellings, (3) critical incidents regarding accessibility and usability of the reading technologies, and (4) parents’ self-reported sense of independence and parent-child intimacy during reading. These findings will provide an empirical basis for developing AI-based reading applications that empower BVI parents while enhancing early literacy skills development for their children.

Project Team