WWW Online Education
) is the world’s largest educator of people who are blind or visually impaired as well as the world’s largest Braille educator. The school’s curriculum has always been delivered completely through online education, meaning students can study from anywhere at any time. Hadley serves nearly 10, 000 students in all 50 states and approximately 100 countries. Hadley serves adult students, age 14 and over. Our mission is to promote independent living through lifelong, distance education programs for individuals who are blind or visually impaired, their families and blindness service providers.
Hadley courses are tuition-free for people who are blind or visually impaired and their family members; there is modest tuition for professionals. Students study at their own pace and receive personalized, one-on-one instruction from their instructor by phone, email, virtual “office hours” or mail.
Students can take courses in four formats: large print, Braille, audio or online. Since we began offering courses in an online format in 2002 as part of our eHadley initiative, more than 13, 000 students have completed one or more online courses. 89 of our approximately 100 courses are offered in an online format, and 20 new online courses were introduced in 2014. Most of our online courses also are now accessible on mobile devices, so that students can literally study on the go if they choose.
If you’re not familiar with blindness, you may be asking yourself how a blind person can take courses online. The answer is through adaptive technology, such as screen magnifiers or screen readers. A screen reader is a software application that converts text on a screen to speech. One of the most popular is called JAWS. If a student doesn’t know how to use a screen reader, Hadley has a series of courses to teach them how to use this technology!
While many students come to us to learn to read and write Braille, we offer much more than just Braille education. In addition to Braille, some of our most popular areas of study include access technology, independent living skills, employment skills and recreation. These courses fall within, which represents the largest number of students at Hadley. Some examples of ACE courses include:
Independent Living Series: This series of two-lesson courses focuses on a variety of topics central to the tasks of daily living. When individuals lose their sight, it can be overwhelming. They must relearn key daily living skills, such as cooking, dressing themselves and getting around. These courses give our students the tools they need to retain their independence and lead productive lives. The individual course topics include: orientation and mobility basics; clothing care and dressing confidently; socializing and dining; and cooking.