Coursework that is dependent on experiential learning, such as that offered in the laboratory-based sciences, can present barriers for a variety of students. These barriers can be magnified for students who experience disabilities that impact their access to the full depth of the course content and materials. Our unique perspective was formed primarily by supporting two blind students at two institution types across multiple biological science departments. In this paper, we explain the barriers we find are currently impacting blind and visually impaired (VI) students’ access to STEM as well as some tools to navigate creating more equitable and accessible spaces to support blind/VI students in STEM. More specifically, we provide general recommendations for working with blind/VI students using a student-centered approach to planning and daily interactions, followed by tips and tools for preparing accessible materials and a case study on how to use learning outcomes to modify course activities to be more useful for blind/VI students, and lastly we provide recommendations for important collaborations.

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