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Student Resources

Primary Tasks

    Secondary Tasks

      Instructional Materials Center
      Ordering Instructional Materials
      K-12 Students
      Reading Disabled Students
      Post-Secondary Students
      Learning Ally - Previously named Recording For The Blind and Dyslexic (RFB&D)
      Student Textbook Educational Materials - List of Formats

      Instructional Materials Center (IMC) is the library unit which assists students and others with their textbook, research, and career needs. The IMC serves students in two principal ways. Its primary function is to provide textbooks and educational material to students from kindergarten through college. Its secondary function is to help students find resources for research projects. In order to use these services, a student must be enrolled as a library patron and actively borrow from our leisure reading collection each year.

      K-12 Students
      Itinerant vision teachers or other school personnel contact the IMC with requests for books for students in grades K-12. Providing the IMC with all pertinent information on required books as far in advance as possible is the most effective way to ensure receiving the books on time.  Click here to complete the K-12 materials online order form for Braille, recorded or electronic textbooks.

      For more information on accessible instructional materials, see the Iowa Department of Education's True AIM website:

      Reading Disabled Students
      The IMC can provide recorded textbooks and Kurzweil files to reading disabled students who qualify for services. These requests can be made by students, parents, teachers, or Area Education Agency personnel. See information on qualifying for services

      Post-Secondary Students
      College students or vocational trainees are responsible for requesting course materials from the IMC. The student must obtain all pertinent information and give it to the IMC as early as possible.

      Find out what books your classes will require by asking the college bookstore, your professors, or the department secretaries. Start gathering this information as soon as you know what classes you will be taking.

      The IMC needs to have your textbook order a minimum of two to three months before your class starts. Click here to complete the college materials online order form for Braille, audio, or electronic college textbooks. This will give staff time to search for the book and to have the first part of it transcribed, if it is not already available. The IMC needs the following information, which is usually found on the title and copyright pages of the book:

      • Title--Be sure it is complete.
      • Subtitle--Be sure it is complete.
      • Author or editor--First name, middle initial, and last name.
      • Series--If appropriate. Be sure the series name is complete.
      • Grade Level--If appropriate.
      • Publisher--Company name and location.
      • Copyright date.
      • Edition--Name or number, if appropriate.
      • Translation--If appropriate.
      • ISBN (International Standard Book Number) of the student copy.

      After IMC staff have conducted a search for your book, your IMC librarian will contact you with the results. You may be asked whether a different edition would be satisfactory. Your instructor can assist you with this decision.

      If you are interested in receiving your textbooks in an electronic format other than .brf, the Students with Disabilities Office at your college can request other formats from the publisher. The college disability office needs to complete an e-text permissions form and send it the to publisher. Publisher files are usually provided in MS Word, ASCII, PDF, or  other agreed upon format.

      Read more on the decision-making process for creating accessible instructional materials

      Learning Ally
      Learning Ally of Princeton, New Jersey, is an organization that transcribes textbooks and other educational materials into audio format. Learning Ally is the IMC's primary source of educational and professional material and has more than 55,000 titles recorded by volunteer narrators.

      Learning Ally provides audio textbooks in downloadable WMA and Daisy formats and on Daisy formatted CDs. Books can be downloaded from the Learning Ally site. Learning Ally Downloadable WMA format can be played on a Microsoft based computer using Windows Media Player version 10 or higher or can be synched to some commercial MP3 players with DRM capabilities.

      Daisy format offers enhanced navigation and bookmarking and is navigable often down to the page level. Daisy downloads can be played from Microsoft Windows compatible computer with Learning Ally enabled software or specialized Daisy players such as the NLS digital talking book machine (DTBM) and are compatible with Apple devices. CDs offer enhanced navigation and play on Learning Ally enabled specialized Daisy Players such as the Victor Vibe or Victor Wave. 

      Patrons must be registered with Learning Ally to use these services. Each individual is assigned a personal identification number that is used for all transactions. A one-time registration fee and an annual fee are charged for using the materials. These fees are usually covered by vocational or educational programs. Ask the IMC librarian about the application process.

      The IMC can help you search for books through Learning Ally, or you can search yourself at the following Internet address: Learning Ally staff can generate subject or author bibliographies, which are useful for research purposes. They can also search their catalog for specific titles. Learning Ally maintains a toll-free customer service line at 800-221-4792 or fax your request to 609-987-8116.