Regular study for the visually disabled
- Information for Accepted Students
- Enrollment in a Semester and Course Registration
- Study Regulations
- Special Needs
- Information System
- Core Subjects
- Adaptation of Lessons and Special Tuition
- Special Skills
- Examinations, Colloquiums and Credits
- Individual Examination Dates
- Closing Request to Teachers
- Arranging accommodation, food and support services, spatial orientation
- Arranging Digital, Library and Print Services
- Special IT Courses
Information for Accepted Students (and their Teachers)
Many of our students with visual impairment are proud of their independence. In spite of that we would encourage you: Come to your Study Section regularly to share your experience. Do not consider your studies and preparation of study materials to be an individual endeavor. You will encourage the other students, who want to study with you, to learn from your experience. You can consult our Students' Office.
If you do not live in Brno, the first thing to find in Brno will be accommodation. If you are interested in dormitories please contact our Students' Office immediately after your arrival. Students' Office staff will arrange accommodation for you in a double room with a permanent connection to the Internet (dormitory at Kounicova Street).
Masaryk University asks every student and employee to get a digital photo. The photo serves on one hand in the Masaryk University Information System for those who want to get in contact with you and on the other hand it's a part of the personal card ISIC (International Student Identity Card). This is a card, which serves as a card of affiliation with the university, as an authorization for sales, for entrance to university facilities, for payment in student's canteens, dormitories etc. There are usually queues while photographing the new students. Never join the queue. We will be happy to arrange an individual date for taking the photo and we will accompany you.
4. Enrollment in a Semester and Course Registration
At the beginning of each school year study sections of faculties organize enrollment in the semester for the first year students. We will be happy to accompany you to the enrollment and we ask especially new students to take advantage of this possibility. In the following semesters you will enroll via the electronic Masaryk University Information System. To some students it seems natural and useful and some teachers or faculty study sections may encourage you to follow the routine of other students and chose a study load accordingly. We would like to persuade you to read both study regulations before you decide on your study load
The number of courses and the dates for their completion are calculated for those students without disabilities to meet them. If you imitate this pace it does not necessarily have to be a sign of your success; often it is an alert that you are simplifying content.
5. Study Regulations
By studying the MU Study and Examination Regulations you will be able to understand terms such as registration, enrollment, semester, credit, lecture, seminar, class exercises, examination, colloquium, credit etc. You will find out that you are responsible for the content of your studies and you register for courses that you are convinced you can manage. Masaryk University only suggests the possibilities in electronic registration templates. That is the most important difference from the studies at high school - you choose courses and times yourself.
6. Special Needs
By studying the MU Students with Special Needs Study Regulations you will be able to understand the following terms: a tutor, a customized study plan, an individual completion of a course and individual examination date etc. You will find out that a situation can occur when the studies are going too fast or you need to take an examination in a course for which you do not have enough study materials. On the other hand, Masaryk University does not require that you enroll in any subject before joint consultation with the tutor, our centre and you. After that it should be clear that all necessary materials are at your disposal in a form, which are accessible for you and other students who may take those particular courses. For studies of each course you can have three-times extended time if you need it. For the studies at the university as a whole it is two-times. For this reason, we ask you to contact us at the beginning of each semester (we will contact your teachers ourselves) to understand when it will be possible to provide you with the study materials.
7. Information System
It is absolutely necessary to learn how to work with the electronic Masaryk University Information System. Maybe you have already tried some of the possibilities while browsing through the Study Fields Catalogue or while submitting the application. However, all administration is arranged through this system: registration and enrollment of every course or study group of this course, an application for examination or colloquium, correspondence with teachers, classification etc. Some faculties do not use the index (printed register for studies at university) as they substitute it with the Information System. Although instruction for beginners (only in Czech) is a part of this application most people need further help. Our Center ensures a course of working with this system for you.
8. Core Subjects
Please arrange your participation in lessons that are not a direct part of the study field but are a condition for completion of your studies - Physical Education, Language Training, methodology-didactic courses etc. in a timely fashion.
9. Adaptation of the Tuition and Special Tuition
If it turns out at the beginning of a semester or afterwards that the teacher is using methods that are not possible to follow for a student with visual impairment (work with blackboard, data projection, video projection etc.), please report this to us immediately. We would like to advice you not to reduce your study duties in private consultation with your teachers to selected extracts and parts of generally recommended literature. Of course it is attractive to make use of the possible offer: "I will ask you only about..." If you are really to engage in professional work it is not enough only to satisfy the requirement of your teachers - it is necessary to build up resources covering the chosen field. By consultation with us you ensure that there will be special tuition for the selected course (individual lecturer from older students, PhD. students or assistants will devote time to you separately and will make the necessary materials available for you.
10. Special Skills
We will be happy if you see yourself as a future intellectual representative of people with visual impairment. Nevertheless, it does not mean that you will necessarily master the exact techniques of those with sight even though your teachers will not be able to advise you otherwise. For this reason, we ask you to come to consult about the means and procedures which are available to you to do the same amount of work like other students with regulation services valid for people with visual impairment (Braille font and print, voice output for work with specific language, work with haptic, sound or digital literature of a field of study, library search, laboratory work).
11. Examinations, Colloquiums and Credits
The board of the university expects you to take every component examination, colloquium or credit in a form, which is commonly used and prescribed (so written examination where the written form is standard). Please do not ask for a modification into an oral form and make us aware if a teacher offers you this option. If you get in touch with us in time, you will get the same conditions for your examinations as during your entrance examinations (assignments in an electronic or printed form, individually extended testing time).
12. Individual Examination Dates
It is not your duty to register for an exam on the announced date regardless of whether you have managed to have and study the necessary literature. On the contrary, the dates of your examinations and colloquiums depend on when the study materials are prepared for you. It is reasonable to settle this in advance with your teachers, our Study Section or the study section of your faculty.
13. Closing Request to Teachers
We ask teachers, lecturers, tutors and supervisors of the fields where students with visual impairment study to get in touch with us and to consult about the individual who is passing through a study programme and his/her individual plan of study literature constantly with us. Many specialized recommended study materials can be made accessible for a student with visual impairment but may take time and are not always available. On the other hand, some materials that are equivalent in its content might be available immediately. For this reason, it is not advisable for the teacher to give the student with visual impairment a list of recommended literature at the beginning of a semester. In most cases it is too late to make the literature accessible at that time. It is best if the list of necessary materials is made available to the student at the end of the previous semester.
Arranging of Digital, Library and Press Services
1. Accompaniment, Spatial Orientation and Orientation Tools
Students with visual impairment have several possibilities for access to the Teiresias Centre and to official negotiations with Masaryk University:
- if you know Brno and if you are used to unsupported movement you can find directions to our Centre in the section Contact - General Contact.
- on the same page you will find Contacts. You can ask us anytime to get a guide.
- if you are accepted to studies and if we can expect that you will go the same route often we will secure the training of it (we always and automatically arrange this service at the beginning of each semester).
- if you want we will offer you a haptic plan of a building, we will arrange haptic marking in the relevant part of a building, on a particular public machine, we will place a voice beacon in a necessary place, we will take the necessary action for installing a sound system at crossroads etc.
The Students' Office guarantees accommodation in dormitories in double bedrooms with a permanent connection to the Internet for all students who do not have their permanent residence in Brno. We ask new students and their parents not to act independently and not to contact the faculties and dormitories. Please get in touch with us. We ask the returning students to fill in the application for a dormitory on time including a note about their disability. Then we ask them remember to send the medical confirmation to the studies sections of the faculties and then to get in touch with our Students' Office so that we can discuss details (room, roommates etc.)
3. Food Services
The Students' Office will also discuss the catering possibilities at Masaryk University with every new student and also with returning students. There is an arranged way in every student's canteen, which allows students with visual impairment to have his/her meal without having to be dependent on a guide (this does not exclude the possibility to have a guide). If you want, we will explain and practice the access to these places and we will introduce you to our members in these facilities.
4. Other Assistance Services
In other situations with a few exceptions, we can offer you our services even in cases where there is no direct interest of Masaryk University (guide to a doctor, to a post office, a visit to an unknown place, shopping etc.) Please be patient and understanding in these cases - it is a service that our employees do out of their working duty. Primarily this service is guaranteed by our colleagues in TyfloCentrum and Tyfloservis. We hope you can understand that they help also clients who may not be at university and are less independent than you.
Arranging of Digital, Library and Press Services
1. Preconditions for Using our Services
Masaryk University expects you to be able to read and write your written tests without support. In case of a more serious impairment you are automatically requested to work with IT, in case of blindness we require the ability of haptic-reading. The reasons why we emphasize the ability to work with IT together with haptic abilities are as follows:
- if you do not have the possibility to work with printed materials there is no other option than to work with electronic documents; the university does not support the print of monographs in enlarged black-print
- certainly there is the possibility to orient in most documents thanks to the voice output; there is no more exact and operational control of the content of the document than a haptic display - in some exact subjects (such as mathematics, physics, special programming types) there is no other option
- there is no other reasonable way for operational work with a structured text (esp. in philological fields of study) than to work in classic haptic print on paper; moreover a student with visual impairment is expected to use the huge information capacities that are available in the world's haptic libraries.
Please contact our Special IT Section that will help you arrange these types of working modalities.
2. Unsupported Work with Library Catalogue
If you are properly equipped with technologies, we expect that you will take the following steps independently before you place an order in our Library and Publishing Section:
- read over the recommended study literature of the related subject in electronic syllabus in the Masaryk University Information System;
- you will check in the online catalogue of the university catalogue for visually impaired whether the relevant literature is already available
If it is difficult or impossible for you to work with the library catalogue please contact our Special IT Section which will provide you with consultations or will arrange a course for using this application.
3. Ordering Study Materials
Once you have checked whether the necessary study materials are available please contact our Library and Publishing Section with an appropriate order - this order should mention at least the exact name of the work and its author and then the exact name of the subject for which the literature is necessary and the teacher of this subject. For those who have little experience with reading the specialized literature- we have to point out that although our university has one of the largest Czech digital libraries for the blind at its disposal (besides the library Braillnet and also KTN in Prague), this is only a minute part of the specialized literature. Most of the special literature will be prepared for you at your request and at the expense of Masaryk University.
At your request the Library and Publishing Section will arrange the following services:
- it will verify with the teacher and a tutor which materials are really necessary (not all materials that are mentioned during lectures or in the subject's syllabus is needed for studying)
- it will arrange a digital version of the relevant material if it is possible to follow digitally the material (we distinguish the electronic accessibility for voice and for haptic perception)
- it will arrange a haptic print including the necessary haptic graphics for the possible and necessary cases
While contacting the Library and Publishing Section please remember that no one is capable of miracles. The standard time for production of a 100 pages monograph in digital version varies from one week to one month; in difficult cases even the entire semester. The reasonable point for discussion about the necessary literature comes at the end of the previous semester and not at the beginning of the semester you want to use the literature in. On the other hand it is not always possible to verify what literature will be needed for the studies because there can be a question of who is teaching the course. On the other hand the delay cannot endanger your studies - anytime it is impossible to provide you with the material on time you will enroll in the course or you will take the exam when you have the possibility to study the necessary materials. You have this right according to MU Students with Special Needs Study Regulations.
4. Other Services
In the Library and Publishing Section you also have the possibility
- to consult the usage of catalogues of other libraries
- to consult about the usage of electronic information resources in the appropriate field
- to consult about the rules of right quotation and right citation to the information resources used
- to get your own black-print copy of your seminar papers or diploma thesis
Special IT Courses with the focus on a specific handicap or a specific type of special work
1. Equipment with the Necessary Technology
The Special IT Section is responsible that each of you has such technical equipment which allows you to take part in lessons. A desktop PC at home or at your dormitory is insufficient for the work in seminars and class exercises (your teachers will get the same information from us). It is not appropriate if you use only your personal answering machine without visual display (such as older Eureca, later Arie, Gin) while discussing specialized topics with your tutors or colleagues. The minimal requirement is a laptop with a voice output or magnifying glass. You will find details at our technical sites.
2. Recommendation for Civil Service
Masaryk University will give you the necessary recommendations for the appropriate Civil Service authorities that are authorized to disburse the necessary technologies and compensatory tools.
3. Lending Hardware and Software
Before your application for the state fee for the necessary equipment is processed or during the time your personal equipment is being repaired you can ask our Special IT Section to lend you the equipment. You can borrow special software together with the university hardware if you need it for specialized work in one of your subjects or if you do not want to buy it in the future or you want to buy it but you would rather try it first.
For those of you who are not skilled working with IT or who are not sure how to use it effectively while working with the Masaryk University Information System and in classes the Special IT Section will arrange a special consultation or course for you.
5. IT Courses
Our Special IT Section is responsible for all subjects focused on using IT which are a part of studies at your faculties and fields of studies and after a consultation with a particular teacher will arrange modification of the subject and individual tuition so that you get instruction how to use the necessary application in combination with an appropriate screen-reader, magnifying glass etc.
Last updated: 22. 8. 2012