Graduate students from the Gallaudet Master of Arts in Accessible Human-Centered Computing (AHCC) and the Master of Arts in Interpreting programs, as well as undergraduate students, are presenting student-led papers on accessibility topics at a prestigious conference at the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu this week. The ACM (Association of Computing Machinery) CHI conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems is a highly competitive conference with just a 26 percent acceptance rate for submissions. These three papers were all supervised by Dr. Christian Vogler. 

The first paper, “How Users Experience Closed Captions on Live Television: Quality Metrics Remain a Challenge,” received an honorable mention in the Best Paper category. This places it in the top five percent of all submissions. It has four AHCC students as lead authors: Mariana Arroyo Chavez, Molly Feanny, Bernard Thompson, and Keith Delk. Information Technology graduate Skyler Officer and postdoctoral fellow Dr. Matthew Seita also contributed, as did AHCC faculty Dr. Abraham Glasser, Dr. Raja Kushalnagar, and Vogler.  

The second paper, “Assessment of Sign Language-Based versus Touch-Based Input for Deaf Users Interacting with Intelligent Personal Assistants,” has one AHCC student and one MA in interpreting student as lead authors: Nina Tran and Paige DeVries. Seita, Glasser, Kushalnagar, and Vogler contributed as well.  

The third paper, “Sign Language-Based versus Touch-Based Input for Deaf Users with Interactive Personal Assistants in Simulated Kitchen Environments” was accepted as competitive late-breaking work (33 percent acceptance rate), with a poster presentation. It has one MA in Interpreting student and two AHCC students as lead authors: Paige DeVries, Nina Tran, and Keith Delk. The work was conceptualized by students who participated in Gallaudet’s Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program on Accessible Information and Communication Technologies: Richard Taulbee (Gallaudet University), Melanie Miga (University of Connecticut) and Pranav Pidathala (University of Maryland). Glasser, Kushalnagar, and Vogler also contributed.  

In addition, Si Chen, a graduate mentor for the 2023 REU and this summer’s program, led “Towards Co-Creating Access and Inclusion: A Group Autoethnography on a Hearing Individual’s Journey Towards Effective Communication in Mixed-Hearing Ability Higher Education Settings.” The paper was a collaboration with Dr. James Waller, of the School of Science, Technology, Accessibility, Mathematics, and Public Health, along with Seita, Vogler, Kushalnagar, and Dr. Qi Wang of the Business program. 

Wang, Chen, and Linguistics doctoral student Desiree Kirst are also part of the team behind another paper, “Towards Inclusive Video Commenting: Introducing Signmaku for the Deaf and Hard-of Hearing.” This stems from ongoing work with colleagues from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. 

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