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Call for Proposals in Effective Access Technology

Oct 17th, 2012 -- dmbsrs

Eligible Participants:  RIT Faculty

Executive Summary: We are seeking proposals from tenured and tenure-track faculty to lead student teams in the development of new and adaptation of current technologies to improve access for persons with differing abilities.  More than one billion people, or approximately 15% of the world’s population, live with some form of disability.  Experience has shown that when barriers to inclusion are removed and persons with disabilities are empowered to fully participate in societal life, their entire community benefits.  We welcome proposals that address any aspect of improved access for persons with differing abilities, but are particularly interested in those that will provide near-term benefits to the Member Agencies  of the Al Sigl Community of Agencies (CP Rochester, Rochester Rehabilitation, Epilepsy Foundation/Pralid, Nation MS Society/Upstate NY Chapter, Rochester Hearing and Speech Center, and Medical Motor Service), affiliates (Arc of Monroe County, Mary Cariola Children’s Center, and LDA) and other organizations, e.g., Association of the Blind and Visually Impaired (ABVI), and  Veterans Outreach Center (VOC).  These projects are intended to increase our already impressive track record of research in the areas of assistive and adaptive technology and complement our on-going efforts in the National Technical Institute for the Deaf and the Institute for Health Sciences and Technology and the RIT/RGH Alliance.  This program will culminate in presentation of results from the projects chosen for funding at a symposium on Effective Access Technology hosted by RIT in the summer of 2013.  Announce of the winning proposals will be made at the RIT Celebration of Research on November 16, 2012.

Award Amounts: Average anticipated award size of $5K with a maximum of $10K.

Student Teams:  3 to 5 students per team.

Due Date: November 12, 2012.

Cost Matching: Not required.

Proposal Length: The proposals should be no more than 4 pages in length using 12 pt. Times New Roman.

Proposal Guidelines:

Executive Summary (1-page): This is a summary of the entire plan, written in plain business English and explaining goal of the project.

Narrative (2-pages):  Identify which particular need you are responding to from the list below.  Explain the specific benefits to be obtained, the strengths associated with your approach, and how it compares to other options that currently exist or are under development.  Identify any existing intellectual property that may be used in the project and any that may be developed as a result of the project. 

Budget (1-page):   Expenditures are not restricted except in the fact that they must be reasonable, directly related to the proposed project, and must adhere to institutional guidelines. The student team members should be budgeted at a rate of $10/hour.  Students should not work more that a maximum of 10 hours per week.  No overhead is to be included.  

Proposal Submission:  Send proposals with completed Proposal Routing Forms to David Bond at, by 5 p.m. on November 12, 2012.

Areas of Need:

1. Improving access to educational environments, materials, and programs that build on the strengths and accommodate the needs of individuals with disabilities.

2.  Technology for improving the mobility of persons with visual or hearing impairment.

3.  Use of interactive media to help persons with cognitive or physical disabilities.

4. Technology which improves the safety and accessibility for individuals living in assisted living and group residences who may have developmental disabilities or physically debilitating disorders or both.

5. Better, more cost effective prosthetics that are self-contained and as easily maintained as possible.

6. Development of technology that can assist with better triaging and diagnosis of aberrant behaviors that result from post-traumatic stress or neurological damage as well as interactive communication and therapeutic interventions and monitoring.

7.  Assistive technology for the aging population to effectively interact and benefit from those interactions with the medical establishment.

8. Other effective access technology needs not captured in the above categories.