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Would you like to be a part of a team that co-creates Audio Description for national parks around the world? Would you like to work directly with park staff on a research initiative to make public places more accessible for people who are blind or low-vision? Are you readily available Oct. 26-28 to participate online (no travel required) in a fun and friendly hackathon-like environment? 

If so, please join us for the 8th Descriptathon, sponsored by the U.S. National Park Service, the U.S National Endowment for the Humanities, and Google. The Descriptathon idea, created by researchers at the University of Hawaii in 2017, is a grant-funded workshop that includes free training about Audio Description but also involves the co-creation of a public product, i.e. the audio-described park brochure, that will be released to the public at the end of the event. These descriptions are available worldwide and for free through The UniDescription Project's mobile apps (on iOS / Android). More than 130 national parks already have published new Audio Description through this Descriptathon process.

There is no cost to participate – other than your time – but you do need to be committed to devoting those three days to this research project, plus be willing to do about 10 hours of prep spread out during the two months beforehand. There will be synchronous Zoom calls and small-group activities involved during those Oct. 26-28 days, including full group activities from noon to 5 p.m. EST on Oct. 26, 2 to 4 p.m. EST on Oct. 27, and noon to 5 p.m. EST on Oct. 28. You will be working directly with staff members at a public place, such as a National Park Service, Parks Canada, or U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service site. All you need to participate is a strong Internet connection, a computer to use for the Zoom calls, and a smartphone. 

 

Want to join us? If so, please just email your interest to the project's principal investigator, Brett Oppegaard, at: brett.oppegaard@hawaii.edu. Thank you for your consideration!

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