Prof. Hornof Advises Top International Ph.D. Students on the Design of Innovative New Assistive Technology

Professor Hornoff presenting poster to another person

Associate Professor Anthony Hornof accepted an invitation to serve as a Faculty Mentor in the Doctoral Consortium of ASSETS 2016, the Association of Computing Machinery Conference on Computers and Accessibility. The Doctoral Consortium brought together a top Ph.D. students from the U.S., Europe, and South America to present their work on a range of innovative new computer-based devices to assist people with disabilities, such as to help students with visual impairments "see" graphs when learning computer science. Four faculty mentored eleven students, helping the students refine their research questions and goals, improve the validity and impact of their work, and increase the potential for lasting scientific contribution.

"I was honored to receive this invitation," Dr. Hornof said. "I have been working in this area for years, both as a researcher but also, for a short period, as a program director at the NSF [National Science Foundation] during which time I came to further appreciate the need for assistive technology research not only to solve a problem, but also to develop lasting theory. It was nice to help the students understand this early in their research careers."

A theme of the ASSETS 2016 conference is that "accessibility has become mainstream." That is to say, technologies and social practices have evolved over the last half-century to dramatically improve the social, education, and independent-living opportunities for people with disabilities. The CIS Department is proud to see Dr. Hornof playing an active role in this evolution.