[Blindmath] SPSS and Statistics

Noble,Stephen L. steve.noble at louisville.edu
Wed Dec 14 14:20:17 CST 2011

Hi Sarah,

I have two responses to your email. The first is a recent request from IBM for blind users of SPSS to help them do some accessibility testing as they work on trying to fix some issues, and the second is an email from Freedom Scientific on their suggestions for getting SPSS to work as it currently stands. Both are copied below.

--Steve Noble

------------- request from IBM --------- 
As some of you know, IBM acquired SPSS (a commonly used statistical analysis software package) a couple of years ago. IBM has recently become aware of some accessibility issues with SPSS when using JAWS and other screen readers and is working to address them.

I was told that they are looking for students or professionals who use screen readers and have access to SPSS with whom they can work to do accessibility testing as issues are resolved.  

If you are interested in helping IBM with SPSS testing (or know of students who would like to do so), please contact the following person (her email and phone are included):
Laurie Riekmann   
Senior Manager Research and Development Collaboration & Deployment Services IBM Software Group, Business Analytics
Phone: 507-253-8120
e-mail: lar at us.ibm.com 

-------------- from Freedom Scientific (note that SPSS requires one to use JAVA Access Bridge) -----------

JAWS does work with the JAVA from Sun Micro systems. Below is the information you need to get started.

Support for Accessible Java Applications

JAWS supports applications written with Sun Microsystems' Java Access API. When you move to a control within a Java application, JAWS automatically puts that control into the virtual buffer, making the application as easy to use as a Web page. JAWS speaks every accessible object available by using the Sun Microsystems Java Accessibility Bridge (version 1.1 or later). In addition, you can even use a simulated JAWS cursor to navigate Java applications. JAWS can also announce position and level information in Java tree views, list views, and radio button groups and recognize ToolTips.

To use Java applications with JAWS, you must download and install both the Java 2 Platform and the Java Accessibility Bridge. You can obtain these files from the Sun Microsystems website.

It is recommended that you use JAWS with Java Accessibility Bridge version 1.1 or later and Java 2 Platform version 1.4.1 or later.

Note: Sun Microsystems may change their web page layout periodically and may release newer versions of their software.

Related Topics:

Installing Java and Java Access Bridge

Installing the Java 2 Platform

Downloading Access Bridge

Installing Access Bridge

Installing the Java 2 Platform

These instructions bring you to the Sun Microsystems Web site where the installation of Java 2 Platform is automated.

Note: Sun Microsystems may change their web page layout periodically and may release newer versions of their software.

list of 3 items

1. Go to the following web address:


2. The Java web site will begin installing the Java software automatically.

3. Follow the instructions provided by the installation program and complete the installation.

list end

Downloading the Access Bridge

These instructions bring you to the Java Access Bridge download page. Perform the following to download Java Access Bridge.

Note: Sun Microsystems may change their Web page layout periodically and may release newer versions of their software.

list of 6 items

1. Go to the following Web address:


2. On the Java Access Bridge download page, press INSERT+F7 to open the Links List dialog. Select the link to download the latest version of Java Access Bridge for Microsoft Windows and press ENTER.

3. Read through the license agreement. If you agree to the terms and conditions described in the license agreement, press F until you move to the Accept radio button and then press SPACEBAR.

4. Press B to move to the Continue button, then press SPACEBAR.

5. Press INSERT+F7 to open the Links List dialog. Select the link for the Access Bridge download file and press ENTER.

6. Save the download file to a folder of your choice.

list end

Installing the Access Bridge

To install Java Access Bridge, use the following procedure:

list of 5 items

1. Before installing any new software, close all running programs on your system.

2. Navigate to the folder where you downloaded the Access Bridge file. This is a compressed archive file which you must extract using a standard decompression utility, such as WinZip.

3. After extracting to a folder of your choice, navigate to that folder and locate the subfolder containing the Access Bridge files. Inside this folder you will find another subfolder called Installer. In the Installer subfolder is a file called Install.exe. Select this file and press ENTER to begin the installation.

4. The installation program starts and lists the Java virtual machines (VM) installed on your computer. Press ENTER to activate the Install to All button.

This will install Java Access Bridge on all your Java virtual machines.

5. When the installation is complete, a confirmation dialog box displays. Press ENTER to activate the OK button. To allow JAWS to recognize your Java installation, you must exit and restart JAWS.

list end

If you have any additional questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Thank you for choosing Freedom Scientific!

If replying to this message, Be sure to include all previous correspondence pertaining to this issue so that we might more quickly assist you.

Kind Regards,

Grant Downey

Technical Support Specialist

Freedom Scientific

Phone support: 727 803 8600, option #2

E-mail Support: support at freedomscientific.com<mailto:support at freedomscientific.com> Visit our website at:


-----Original Message-----
From: blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of Sarah L. Gales
Sent: Wednesday, December 14, 2011 6:04 AM
To: Blindmath at nfbnet.org
Subject: [Blindmath] SPSS and Statistics

Hi, I am new to the list.  A friend suggested I join to obtain information.

I have gone back to school and am majoring in psychology.  Next semester I am taking a Research Methods and Statistics course in the psychology department.  The course uses SPSS in parts.  I have heard that SPSS is not accessible with jaws.  What have people done to get around this?  I will need to take additional courses that will use it and plan on going on to graduate school where I will more than likely need it.

The school proposes the use of an academic aid to assist me in doing the spss assignments.  

The professor seems very willing to work with me.  We will use excel during class to solve problems that she goes through in class.  I have not used excel for this in ten years so I need to familliarize myself with how to put formulas into excel again.  I wish there was a tutorial for using excel with math equations.

Does anyone have any advice or thoughts for me?


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