Free Alternative Format Workshop sessions during AHEAD 2009 in Louisville, KY

6th Jul, 2009

International alternative format advocate AltFormat.org and industry experts Dolphin Computer Access partner at AHEAD 2009 to offer free 'AltFormat' workshops to higher education disability service providers

Princeton, NJ (July 06, 2009) - International alternative format advocacy group AltFormat.org are hosting their first US based alternative format creation workshops. These follow a similar and successful program of workshops across Britain and South Africa where they trained in excess of five hundred university and college professionals. Partnered by the alternative media experts at Dolphin Computer Access, the first four of these free US workshops, entitled "Easy as 1, 2, 3: Creating alternative formats the EasyConverter Way" are set to commence at the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) 2009 Global Access conference in Kentucky from July 20th to 25th, 2009.

Dolphin's chief product designer, Mattias Karlsson, will lead each workshop, offering attendees a step by step insight into the 'whole' alternative format creation process, from the beginning as a raw source file, through to conclusion as quality large print, MP3, DAISY talking books & Braille.

AltFormat.org Chairman Noel Duffy explains why AltFormat.org has decided to bring their free alternative format workshops to the US.

Open Quotation markThese are exciting times. Over the past few years the demand for high quality, timely, alternative format material has been growing exponentially. Requests for MP3 and DAISY now being received from learning disabled students to go alongside the more traditional large print and Braille requests of their visually impaired peers. Despite the best efforts of the disability officers universities and colleges have struggled to meet their obligations. The Obama stimulus package may alleviate some of the resource pressure on DSS officers. However we need a long term sustainable solution. Hopefully these sessions organized jointly by Dolphin and AltFormat.org can point to a future where more can be achieved for less.

Each of the free workshop sessions will take place during the Annual Conference of the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) Conference held this year in the Kentucky between 20th to 25thJuly 2009. Ron Stewart, Managing Consultant Altformat Solutions LLC explains:

Open quotationThe theme of the AHEAD 2009 conference is 'Global Access: Opening a World of Opportunity' and the conference schedule is already packed. However we have been delighted that AHEAD has allowed AltFormat.org & Dolphin Computer Access to deliver a series of free workshops to our colleagues in higher education. I have personally seen the difference these trainings have already made in the UK and we are especially pleased to see DAISY expert Mattias Karlsson travelling in from Sweden to deliver the sessions."

For more than 15 years, Mattias has been at the forefront of the development of alternative format materials for the vision and print impaired people and is highly regarded for his contributions to the development of the digital talking book format DAISY (Digital Accessible Information System). As the driving force behind EasyConverter and EasyReader and the alternative format product manager for Dolphin Computer Access, Mattias will be perfectly positioned to lead each of the four workshops sessions. Mattias will educate the workshop attendees with tips to deliver quality alternative format materials with speed, suggestions on best practice and proven processes, as well advice on how to avoid the most common pitfalls.

The workshop sessions will be based around version 5 of Dolphin's EasyConverter software that enables disability officers with all levels of alternative format creation experience to make large print, Braille, MP3 and DAISY talking book formats of their students print materials. Each of the four workshop sessions entitled "Easy as 1, 2, 3: Creating alternative formats the EasyConverter Way" are free, but seats will be limited and will be reserved on a 'first-come, first-served basis'. The workshop times are:

  • Wednesday 22 July 2009 at 13:00
  • Wednesday 22 July 2009 at 19:00
  • Thursday 23 July 2009 at 12:30
  • Friday 24 July 2009 at 16:00

To book your free workshop seat, visit www.yourdolphin.com/book_event.asp.