Easy reading is a methodology designed to write, or adapt, and validate a text in an accessible way, so that people with comprehension difficulties can understand what they read, highlighting in this group those with intellectual disabilities. In order to continue adapting its contents to be understood by everyone, Las Campanas Observatory launched the easy-to-read version of its main website, becoming the only foreign observatory in Chile to have an inclusive version of its website. This website is hosted on the main site and can be accessed through the link https://lecturafacil.lco.cl.
In addition, the website has visual accessibility tools to facilitate navigation.
The adaptation to easy reading was carried out by the master student in History of Science and Scientific Communication at the Universitat de València Pamela Paredes, as part of her professional practice. The validation of the contents was in charge of “Líderes con 1000 capacidades”, an organization integrated by people who belong or have belonged to special schools, school integration projects, and similar.
For Leopoldo Infante, director of Las Campanas Observatory, it is surprising how relatively sophisticated ideas can be easily transmitted: “Astronomy is a science that includes all the basic sciences. Therefore, it lends itself to mass dissemination. Through astronomy, people of all ages and cultural backgrounds can be educated in chemistry, physics, biology, geology, etc., regardless of their abilities,” he says.
One of the most important parts of the process is to select the content from the original website, which must be done after an exhaustive study of the target audience, in this case, people with intellectual disabilities. “In the case of the observatory, it is the telescopes, including the science that is done with them,” says Pamela Paredes.
The launching of the web https://lecturafacil.lco.cl was on March 25, 2022, in the context of the Astronomy Week in Chile. This activity was carried out online, with the participation of people with intellectual disabilities belonging to “Líderes con 1000 capacidades”, together with teachers and educators who work with people with different disabilities.