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Article Version


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In this article, the strategies and techniques used to successfully teach advanced inorganic chemistry, in the lecture and laboratory, to a legally blind student are described. At Fairfield University, these separate courses, which have a physical chemistry corequisite or a prerequisite, are taught for junior and senior chemistry and biochemistry majors. A student earns a separate grade in each the lecture (three credits) and the laboratory course (two credits). An overview of the course topics is given, followed by general accommodations and specific approaches that were used. Student assistants were very helpful and provided extra support for the blind student. Student assistants were utilized for the laboratory course, problem sets, and exams. Specific examples and detailed explanations of approaches that were helpful to the legally blind student throughout the entire course are provided. The legally blind student benefited from extensive, verbal description of complexes, figures, and diagrams. In addition, the student benefited from tactile description of figures and models. The student assistants and extra office hours were essential for the blind student to succeed and excel in advanced inorganic chemistry. The approaches discussed in this paper are the product of immediate and continual feedback from the student over the course of the semester. The student would frequently comment after class that he followed the lesson or was confused, and the latter comment elicited experimentation with different approaches.


Copyright 2015 American Chemical Society. Post-print has been archived here with permission from copyright holder. Final publisher version available

Publication Title

Journal of Chemical Education

Published Citation

Miecznikowski, John R., Matthew J. Guberman-Pfeffer, Elizabeth E. Butrick, Julie A. Colangelo, and Cristine E. Donaruma. "Adapting Advanced Inorganic Chemistry Lecture and Laboratory Instruction for a Legally Blind Student." Journal of Chemical Education 92, no. 8 (2015): 1344-1352. DOI: 10.1021/ed500489c