The Braille Authority of New Zealand Aotearoa Trust (BANZAT) has adopted Unified English Braille (UEB) for the teaching and production of braille. UEB was developed by the International Council on English Braille (ICEB). BANZAT is a member of ICEB. ICEB has a Code Maintenance Committee which monitors the use of UEB and updates it as appropriate. When ICEB makes any changes to UEB, BANZAT considers these changes and adopts them on the recommendation of its own Code Maintenance Committee following consultation with New Zealanders involved in the use, production and teaching of braille.
More detailed information about transcribing mathematics and science in UEB are provided in Unified English Braille: Guidelines for technical material.
Learning the braille code
Braille and the UEB code used in New Zealand can be learned from the New Zealand edition of the UEB Manual. This is a training manual for students studying for the Trans-Tasman Unified English Braille Proficiency Certificate. It is based on the Australian Primer produced by the Australian Braille Authority and uses the same exercises but is adjusted to reflect New Zealand formatting. The Australian Manual is based on the British Braille Primer. The New Zealand manual is maintained by the braille team in Accessible Format Production at the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind under the auspices of BANZAT. Three formats of the August 2013 New Zealand edition of the UEB Manual are provided here for download:
- the PDF version of the manual
- the password protected Word version of the manualfor the password email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Volume 1 of the braille version of the manual
- Volume 2 of the braille version of the manual
- Volume 3 of the braille version of the manual
- Volume 4 of the braille version of the manual
- Volume 5 of the braille version of the manual
UEB Online is a training program for sighted people to learn UEB. This program is the first online UEB training tool. The program is suitable for classroom and specialist teachers, parents, teacher aides and other professionals supporting children and adults with vision impairment. This program has been created by the Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children's Renwick Centre in Sydney, Australia.
The link is uebonline.org
Teaching the braille code to children
“The Hitchhiker's Guide to UEB” was written for children learning UEB by New Zealand resource teachers vision as a quick reference tool for all those supporting children learning UEB. It is divided into two sections, literary braille and maths braille. The BRF and PDF versions are here with printing and binding instructions for the PDF version. The BRF version is formatted 25 lines per page, 40 characters per line.
BANZAT recommends the use of the Duxbury Braille Translator program. Endorsed by BANZAT, the Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind has written a New Zealand template for Duxbury. This includes rules for the correct transcription of words in Te Reo Māori.
Essentials of Braille Formatting
“Essentials of Braille Formatting” has been developed by BANZAT for the New Zealand environment. This guide covers letters, agendas and minutes, accounts, the treatment of tables and print page indicators and tables of contents, as well as BANZAT's rules for the transcription of Te Reo Māori. Guidance is given about copyright and cataloguing and the handling of print errors that producers might encounter.
International Phonetic Alphabet
Following ICEB approval, BANZAT has adopted the braille code for the International Phonetic Alphabet for use in New Zealand. A PDF version can be found at IPA Braille: an updated tactile representation of the International Phonetic Alphabet, print edition, overview, tables, and sample texts edited by Robert Englebretson, Ph.D., produced by CNIB for the International Council on English Braille 2008.