CFP: ‘Disability as Insight, Access as the Function of Design’, Special Issue of The Journal of Interactive Technology and Pedagogy

The Journal of Interactive Technology and Pedagogy

Special Topic: Disability as Insight, Access as the Function of Design

Issue Editors:

  • Sushil K. Oswal, University of Washington
  • Andrew J. Lucchesi, The Graduate Center, CUNY

JITP welcomes work that explores critical and creative uses of interactive technology in teaching, learning, research, and the workplace. For this issue, we invite submissions from both senior and emerging scholars under the linked themes of disability and access as generative focuses for technological design and pedagogical innovation.

In this issue of JITP, rather than approaching disability as a problem to be solved, we seek proposals for projects that imagine, explore, and underscore the positive gains to be had by embracing disability perspectives on accessible designs. We draw on Elizabeth Sanders and Pieter Jan Stappers’s conception of future-minded generative design research and ask contributors to propose projects that would inform and inspire future designers, teachers, and researchers to shape digital tools, methodologies, and environments which de-center ableistic visions of technology, composing processes, curricular content, and access itself.

We request proposals for critical narratives that underscore the contributions disability makes in stretching the boundaries of design while asserting a central place for accessibility, inclusivity, and bodily difference. We also welcome topics that challenge or reconceptualize the traditional notions of assistive technologies and accessible designs whether or not they necessarily address the topic from the perspective of Disability Studies. Rhetorical analysis of technology, accessibility, and disability can also be a productive area of exploration.

Please send inquiries to and

Suggested topics may include but are not limited to:

  • What does it mean to compose multimodally with accessibility in view as a person with or without disability? What might it look like to design inclusive user interactions in social virtual spaces? What complexity, creativity, or obfuscations are visible in today’s social media compositions at the intersections of gender, race, and disability?
  • What novel disability and accessibility scholarship projects have been made, or are possible by virtual Social Networks? What new knowledge is possible through assistive-technology-related disability and accessibility research for universal users?
  • Besides the functional innovations, what possibilities for play and improvisation are possible through assistive technologies and related research? How do such play and improvisation stabilize existing knowledge and directionally change the generation of new knowledge?
  • Development of assistive technology tools or applications for “mainstream” purposes; rhetorics of assistive technologies; rhetorical histories of assistive technologies morphing into “mainstream” products; rhetorics of, or analyses of, consumer mobile technologies as assistive technologies; visions of assistive technologies for able-bodied users.
  • Analyses of new models of Universal Design; benefits and/or analyses of disabled-centered participatory designs; position papers on innovative, crowd-sourced designs by and for the disabled.
  • Generative research methods for evaluating accessible designs, products, and pedagogies; profiles or analyses of digital tools for disability activism, or community building ; or experiments in fostering accessibility in learning, work, and research environments in college and beyond.

We invite both textual and multimedia submissions employing interdisciplinary and creative approaches in the humanities, sciences, and social sciences. Besides scholarly papers, the proposed submissions can consist of audio or visual presentations and interviews, dialogues, or conversations; creative/artistic works; manifestos; or other scholarly materials.

All JITP submissions are subject to an open peer review process. The expected length for finished manuscripts is under 5,000 words. Proposals received that do not fall under the special topic topic but do fall under JITP’s broader themes will still be considered for publication in Issue 8.

The deadline for this Special Issue is 15th April 2015.  Submission instructions are available here.

History of Medicine Postdoctoral Fellowship, John Hopkins University

The Department of the History of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University, seeks applicants for a two-year postdoctoral fellowship. The fellow will have teaching and administrative responsibilities in the department’s new online program in the history of medicine and protected time to pursue his or her research and writing. The successful candidate will have a proven record of teaching in the history of medicine, a strong research profile and excellent organizational skills. Candidates must have defended their PhD thesis by 31st May 2015.

Duties will include teaching and providing pedagogical and administrative support for online courses, including lecturing; managing online class discussions; grading; assisting with registration and advising; and liaising with faculty members and instructional designers. The fellow will pursue a sustained program of research and writing, mentored by Department faculty, and make satisfactory progress towards publication goals.

Closing date for applications: 31st March 2015. Skype interviews will be conducted in early April. The term of appointment is one year, beginning 1st July 2015, with the expectation of renewal for one further year assuming satisfactory performance.  Salary: $42,000 plus benefits.

Please send: cover letter; CV; statement of teaching philosophy; sample syllabus; dissertation chapter or other writing sample; and arrange to have three letters of recommendation sent directly to Ms. Frances Rudner Questions: please contact Dr. Graham Mooney at

Johns Hopkins University is an AA/EOE and actively encourages applications from minority and women scholars. Note: the successful candidate for this position will be subject to a routine background check.

Position in Disability Studies, Syracuse University

The Disability Studies Program in the Department of Cultural Foundations of Education in the School of Education at Syracuse University seeks a tenure track Assistant Professor of Disability Studies. We seek an interdisciplinary Disability Studies scholar whose areas of expertise and training lie within the social sciences, particularly sociology of disability and/or history of disability. The successful candidate may also have expertise in one or more of the following:

  • Disability Studies in Education
  • Critical Disability Studies
  • Race and Disability
  • Queer Disability Studies
  • Transnational Disability Studies
  • Cultural Studies & Disability
  • Disability Advocacy/Activism
  • Participatory research or other inclusive modes of inquiry
  • Youth/media/popular culture and disability

Earned doctorate in Disability Studies or a closely related field is required (completed by August 2015). The successful candidate will show evidence of a strong research trajectory and potential for funded research.

The candidate will be expected to conduct research, seek external funding, teach undergraduate and graduate courses in Disability Studies, both in face-to-face and online formats. The candidate will also advise undergraduate and graduate students and supervise dissertation research.

Commensurate with education and experience.

Application Procedure:
All candidates must complete an on-line application here and attach a current CV; cover letter explaining your interest in the position, research interests and teaching philosophy (one document); a representative publication or other work sample; and contact information for three references to provide letters of recommendation.

Review of applications will begin on 1st March 2015 and the position will remain open until filled. Questions about the position may be sent by email to the Search Chair, Alan Foley (

Direct link to this posting available here.

Blind Creations: an International Colloquium and Micro-Arts Festival, 28th-30th June, Royal Holloway, University of London

This three-day international conference and micro arts festival,which will take place between 28th and 30th June 2015, seeks to explore the relationship between blind people and artistic creation.

Our definition of ‘blind person’ is broad, encompassing anyone who might be defined as having ‘non-normative vision’ and / or who relates to the world using senses other than sight. It welcomes interventions from blind and non-blind academics (with or without institutional affiliation), practitioners, advocates, writers and artists (also broadly defined to include musicians, actors and sculptors as well as visual artists). It sees blind people not only as subjects in their own right, but also as active creators; as such it rejects the ‘medical model’ of disability which posits blind people as passive objects of medical investigation and rehabilitation. In so doing it hopes to challenge and reconceptualise the myths and stereotypes of ‘blindness’ which continue to circulate by recasting ‘blindness’ as a multi-faceted and positive creative force which might be usefully explored by both non-blind and blind people.

The conference, which will take place at Royal Holloway’s campus in Egham, Surrey, UK, is co-organized by Hannah Thompson (Royal Holloway) and Vanessa Warne (University of Manitoba, Canada). We are pleased to announce that the conference will feature three plenary speakers: Prof Georgina Kleege (UC Berkeley), Prof Stephen Kuusisto (Syracuse University) and Dr Zina Weygand (Paris). Other highlights will include:

  • An audio-described screening of Ruth Grimberg’s 2014 documentary Across Still Waterfollowed by a Q and A with the director and producer.
  • A touch-tour of one of Royal Holloway’s most evocative sculptures, ‘Erinna’
  • An audio-described tour of Royal Holloway’s famous Picture Gallery
  • A creative writing round table with French novelist Romain Villet, Canadian writer Ryan Knighton, French translator Frederic Greiller and Anglo-Canadian sci-fi writer Naomi Foyle
  • Four art installations explained and introduced by their creators
  • An after-dinner talk by Louis Braille’s biographer Michael Mellor
  • Interactive art and theatre workshops on the theme of blind creation.

The Blind Creations programme is now available here, and details of registration and pricing are available here.


University of Queensland’s Postdoctoral Fellowship, History of Medicine/History of Sexuality

The Centre for the History of European Discourses (CHED) at the University of Queensland (Australia) is looking for well-qualified and innovative postdoctoral researchers (no more than 5 years out of their PhD by June 30, 2015) whom it can support as applicants to the University of Queensland’s Postdoctoral Fellowship scheme, which offers full-time research-only positions for a period of three years beginning in January 2016. We are particularly interested in candidates specialising in the history of sexuality/history of medicine. A team of researchers within the Centre, including Professor Peter Cryle and Dr Karin Sellberg, is currently working on topics in the intellectual and cultural history of sexuality.

Interested researchers should send their CV and a brief (200 word) outline for a project to Peter Cryle ( and Karin Sellberg ( by 8th February or as soon as possible thereafter.

The criteria for selection are:

  1. the quality and innovation of the project
  2. neatness of fit with the centre’s research strengths
  3. a relatively established record of publication in the field.


For further information, please visit CHED’s website or contact Peter Cryle ( and Karin Sellberg (