Reading Comprehension Issues and Individuals with Visual Impairments: The Effects of Using 8-dot and 6-dot Braille Code Through a Braille Display

  • Vassilios ArgyropoulosEmail author
  • Aineias Martos
  • Georgios Sideridis
  • Georgios Kouroupetroglou
  • Magda Nikolaraizi
  • Maria Papazafiri
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9176)


The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the effects of 6-dot and 8-dot braille code on the reading comprehension ability of individuals with severe visual impairments and/or blindness when the latter receive typographic meta-data (bold and italic) by touch through a braille display. Also, patterns of hand movements were investigated and related to issues of comprehension. The most important finding related to the superiority of the 8-dot braille code in predicting reading comprehension in individuals with severe visual impairments. It was also found that reading comprehension was particularly predicted from the negative relationship between participants’ fluency and comprehension. It was conjectured that all comparisons between conditions were significant suggesting that the present findings were likely robust and not reflective of idiosyncrasies in the sample. The focus of the discussion was placed on the importance of conducting additional research increasing the sample size with more extensive training for those who will constitute the extended sample.


Typographic meta-data 6-dot braille 8-dot braille Braille display Blindness Patterns of hand movements Linear regression 



This research has been co-financed by the European Union (European Social Fund – ESF) and Greek national funds through the Operational Program “Education and Lifelong Learning” of the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF) under the Research Funding Project: “THALIS-University of Macedonia- KAIKOS: Audio and Tactile Access to Knowledge for Individuals with Visual Impairments”, MIS 380442.


  1. 1.
    Bickford, J.O., Falco, R.A.: Technology for early braille literacy: comparison of traditional braille instruction and instruction with an electronic notetaker. J. Vis. Impairment Blindness 106, 679–693 (2012)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Edmonds, C.J., Pring, L.: Generating inferences from written and spoken language: A comparison of children with visual impairment and children with sight. Br., J. Dev. Psychol. 24, 337–351 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Argyropoulos, V., Martos, A., Kouroupetroglou, G., Chamonikolaou, S., Nikolaraizi, M.: An experimental approach in conceptualizing typographic signals of documents by eight-dot and six-dot braille code. In: Stephanidis, C., Antona, M. (eds.) UAHCI 2014, Part II. LNCS, vol. 8514, pp. 83–92. Springer, Heidelberg (2014)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Millar, S.: Reading by touch. Routledge, New York (1997)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Argyropoulos, V., Kouroupetroglou, G., Martos, A., Nikolaraizi, M., Chamonikolaou, S.: Patterns of blind users’ hand movements. In: Miesenberger, K., Fels, D., Archambault, D., Peňáz, P., Zagler, W. (eds.) ICCHP 2014, Part I. LNCS, vol. 8547, pp. 77–84. Springer, Heidelberg (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Kouroupetroglou, G., Tsonos, D.: Multimodal accessibility of documents. In: Pinder, S. (ed.) Advances in Human-Computer Interaction, pp. 451–470. I-Tech Education and Publishing, Vienna (2008)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Fourli-Kartsouni, Florendia, Slavakis, Kostas, Kouroupetroglou, Georgios, Theodoridis, Sergios: A Bayesian Network Approach to Semantic Labelling of Text Formatting in XML Corpora of Documents. In: Stephanidis, Constantine (ed.) HCI 2007. LNCS, vol. 4556, pp. 299–308. Springer, Heidelberg (2007)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Hudson, R.F., Lane, H.B., Pullen, P.C.: Reading fluency assessment and instruction: what, why and how? International Reading Association, pp.702–714 (2005) doi: 10.1598/RT.58.8.1
  9. 9.
    Heller, M.A.: Picture perception and spatial cognition in visually impaired people. In: Heller, Μ., Ballesteros, S. (eds.) Touch and Blindness, pp. 49–71. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, New Jersey (2006)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Torgesen, J.K.: Computers and cognition in reading: a focus on decoding fluency. Except. Child. 53, 157–162 (1986)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Pearson, P.D., Johnson, D.: Teaching reading comprehension. Holt, New York (1978)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Cohen, J.: A power primer. Psychol. Bull. 112, 155–159 (1992)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Wright, T., Wormsley, D.P., Kamei-Hannan, C.: Hand movements and braille reading efficiency: data from the alphabetic braille and contracted braille study. J. Vis. Impairment Blindness 103, 649–661 (2009)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Cohen, H., Scherzer, P., Viau, R., Voss, P., Lepore, F.: Working memory for braille is shaped by experience. Communicative Integr. Biol. 4, 227–229 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Paris, S.G., Paris, A.H.: Classroom applications of research on self-regulated learning. Educ. Psychol. 36, 89–101 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Fujita, K., Yamashita, J.: The relations and comparisons between reading comprehension and reading rate of Japanese high school EFL learners. Reading Matrix 14, 34–49 (2014)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Smith, J.L., Cummings, K.D., Nese, J.F.T., Alonzo, J., Fien, H., Baker, S.K.: The relation of word reading fluency initial level and gains with reading outcomes. Sch. Psychol. Rev. 43, 30–40 (2014)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vassilios Argyropoulos
    • 1
    Email author
  • Aineias Martos
    • 1
    • 2
  • Georgios Sideridis
    • 3
  • Georgios Kouroupetroglou
    • 2
  • Magda Nikolaraizi
    • 1
  • Maria Papazafiri
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Special EducationUniversity of ThessalyVolosGreece
  2. 2.Department of Informatics and TelecommunicationsNational and Kapodistrian University of AthensAthensGreece
  3. 3.Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA

Personalised recommendations