6 October 2022

The benefits of Braille Maths in educational settings

A Maths degree? That sounds difficult!

Calculus, geometry, matrices, statistics – these sound quite daunting to a lot of people.

Now imagine trying to do a Maths, Science or Engineering degree with little or no sight….

Visually impaired students may face some challenges when they first go to college or university – finding their way around, making new friends, and managing a budget. But one thing they shouldn’t need to worry about is equal access to course materials and exam papers. Everyone in the UK has the right to accessible and fair higher education under The Equality Act 2010, and for Blind or severely visually impaired students one aspect of this is equal access to written and electronic text.

A student writing complex maths on a blackboard


You might think that students just use technology these days, and that’s true to an extent for visually impaired students as well as their sighted peers. People who can read and write Braille can use technology such as screen readers, Braille displays and Braille notetakers to access documents on digital devices.

But not all information is available with the use of technology and this is certainly true for text books and exam papers that contain Braille symbols, graphs and diagrams.

Braille Maths

Maths and Science are typically visual in nature. There are specialist symbols, notation and language, and the layout is often an important factor. The same is true in Maths Braille. There is a specialist Braille code for Maths, with unique character combinations to adapt the Mathematics correctly. Columns, tables and charts also need to be adapted.

Technology such as screen readers and Braille displays can’t access images and can struggle to read columns and tables correctly. Maths is often created as an ‘image’ in documents and text books, so the layout remains correct.

Braille Maths is a valuable way to enable Blind students to access equations and complex problems.

Tactile diagrams and graphs

As we all know, Maths isn’t always just text. There are often graphs and diagrams explaining certain concepts or data. And diagrams might be either computer-generated, or hand drawn.

Tactile diagrams translate a visual image into a tactile one; they use raised surfaces so blind and visually impaired people can feel them. Tactile diagrams should include Braille and Braille Maths for the text and labels around the diagrams too, where needed

A Mathematical tactile diagram with Maths notation

The benefits of Maths Braille

  • Creates equality of opportunity
  • Gives equal and fair access to Maths, Science and Engineering documents for all students
  • Tailors supports to your students in the best way possible
  • Promotes independent learning
  • Helps you meets the legal requirements of reasonable adjustments set out in The Equality Act 2010

Let A2i help you

A2i has been producing exceptional Braille Maths – including exam papers and tactile diagrams – for many years to University and Colleges across the UK. Our flexible and adaptable team can guide you through the ordering process so your students have access to a customised and meticulously produced transcribed document enabling them to take their learning to the next level.

Our Braille Maths transcription service is professional, efficient, and reliable, ensuring you get a first-rate service in super-fast time.

This means your visually impaired students can engage with their Maths and science subjects on an equal footing with sighted students, with the timely supply of excellent quality Braille Maths and other Braille documents from A2i.

Read about our Braille Maths work with Liverpool Hope University

For more information about A2i’s Braille Maths service, or a quote, just get in touch with A2i’s friendly team at
Email: info@a2i.co.uk
Web: a2i.co.uk
Telephone: 01179 44 00 44
Or use our quick quote form

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