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Web resources used to avoid cognitive overload and ensure UDL

Web resources used to avoid cognitive overload and ensure UDL

Published in Technology , Design
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  • 1. Web Resources#1 Site Review:WebAim 508 ChecklistURL Address: Site gives checklist for properly formatting HTML, scripts, Java, and plug-ins.Links are present to full version of 508, as well as link to support.Strengths and Weaknesses: Site is an excellent resource to use for ensuring accessibility. However,format is mostly within data tables, which would prove frustrating with a screen reader in respect toorganization.Web Validator: WAVE accessibility checker detects no accessibility errors found. Table header cells arepresent and links are functional. However, there is an alert for Java script element.Accessibility/UDL: Translations are available for 4 different languages. Headings are properly marked, noflashing or highly pixilated images. Site such as this must be used to ensure accessibility for all learners.This is a simple checklist which designers can use to make sure their technology will be accessible toindividuals with hearing, physical, sight, and cognitive disabilities.
  • 2. #2 Site Review:Jennifer Herrod Cognitive OverloadURL Address: Site simply explains cognitive load, working memory, and provides manyhelpful tips. Cognitive load within education and workforce presentations are explored, warningsymptoms given, and assistance to avoid provided.Strengths and Weaknesses: Site reinforces research I have found to date, and is presented in simple tounderstand language. Major weakness is that site is full of accessibility errors and has horriblenavigation. Does contain practice in reducing cognitive load.Web Validator: Wave detected 32 accessibility errors. Errors include missing alt text, javascriptelements, event handler and missing elements.Accessibility/UDL: Not accessible. Language is straight forward and easy to understand for a screenreader or translation device, but missing links and poor navigation cause frustration. I find this ratherironic for a site that is meant to reduce cognitive load. Site can be used by designers to ensure cognitiveoverload is avoided for individuals with disabilities, as well as all other individuals, which is the aim ofUDL.
  • 3. #3 Site Review: Web aim Powerpoint techniquesURL Address: This site is an informative compilation of information instructing reader how tocreate accessible Power Point presentations. Site includes detailed, user-friendly instructions consistingof creating accessible Power point files for Mac, proper slide layout, how to install alt text, proper wayto handle data tables, how to install links, how to convert Power point to other formats and export toPDF, how to create HTML slides, and my favorite, instructions of how to use the 2010 Power pointaccessibility checker.Strengths and Weaknesses: Site contains a wealth of information for creators, and everything isexplained in simple to understand language. Weakness would be if user does not have Power pointinstalled.Web Validator: WAVE detected no accessibility errors within site.Accessibility/UDL: Site is very accessible. Simple instructions are used, and images are used to assistinstruction. Site is not cluttered, and information is indispensable to creators trying to make sure theirPower points are accessible to all. Designers following procedures explained in this site will help toensure technology is accessible to individuals with cognitive, physical, visual, and hearing disabilities.Types of disabilities are explained to ensure websites, presentations, and documents are accessible to alllearners.#4 Site Review: LD OnlineURL Address:
  • 4. Purpose/Content/Topic:LD Online offers hundreds of expert-reviewed articles and resourcesfor educators, parents, and others concerned about children and adults with learningdisabilities and ADHD. Below are the major topics covered, which the user can connect toarticles and resources on each issue. About LD Accommodations & Modifications ADHD Adults with LD Behavior & Social Skills Classroom Management College & College Prep Early Identification English Language Learners & LD Evaluation / LD Testing Gifted & LD Homeschooling Homework Help IEPs Legislation & Policy Math & Dyscalculia Nonverbal LD Parenting & Family Processing Deficits Reading & Dyslexia Research & Reports Response to Intervention Self Esteem & Stress Management Special Education Speech & Language Study Skills Teaching & Instruction Technology Transition: School to Work Writing & SpellingSite also includes learning disability and ADHD basics with links to each topic.Strengths and Weaknesses: Site is a wealth of information and easy to navigate to research topics. Nicethat index remains to left on each page. So much information in one place could be considered aweakness.
  • 5. Web Validator: WAVE detected 4 accessibility errors, which include problematic link text, java scriptelements, and very long alt text. Headings are properly labeled, and alt text is present.Accessibility/UDL: Excellent site to educate developers about specific disabilities, and education is amust to have ability to make technology accessible to everyone. Well known and rare disabilities arecovered, and it is useful for parents, kids, and educators. Navigation is easy, and site even includes aglossary for users. Help available for ADHA, stress management, reading, and writing to name a few.Also, gifted students and their needs are addressed.#5 Site Review: Project oneURL Address: Project one is an online free guide to creating accessible online learningthrough technology. Topics covered are HTML, UDL, accessibility, and assistive technology. Bestpractices and advice for designing accessible educational content is provided. Home of site is presentedas an outline, creating ease of navigation. Visual, hearing, cognitive, and physical disabilities areexplored in relation to assistive technology.
  • 6. Strengths and Weaknesses: Site is well organized, simply wrote, and is designed for novices and expertsalike. The weakness would be so much information to process, better to use site for specific guidanceand reference.Web Validator: WAVE detected no accessibility errors within site.Accessibility/UDL: Site is accessible, has properly working links, and contains a wealth of guidelines andsuggestions for ensuring accessibility for all learners within an online environment. Seven aspects of UDLare covered, as well as explanation of how online educational content benefits from UDL.#6 Site Review:CASTURL Address: CAST is an acronym for Center for Applied Special Technology. The site containsa wealth of information and latest trends regarding using technology to assist persons with disabilities.Links to various learning tools are included, all of which incorporate UDL into learning. A library isincluded offering research articles, presentations, books, videos and statements. Multiple professionaldevelopments are offered, both within site and classes for educators to attend. A simple to understandexplanation of UDL is given, as well as a question and answer section.
  • 7. Strengths and Weaknesses: This site is an excellent all inclusive UDL guide, accessible and easy tocomprehend. The only weakness seems to be the missing learner information. I could not find anyinformation in respect to specific learners.Web Validator: WAVE detected no accessibility errors. Titles are formatted properly, and links keep useron same page.Accessibility/UDL: Site is accessible to individuals with hearing and sight disabilities, and is very helpful inexplaining UDL to designers. Videos are provides, and links function to enhance learning, as opposed tocreating overload. The aspects of UDL are simply and thoroughly explained, even including videoexplanation.#7 Site Review:Microsoft Accessibility Technology for EveryoneURL Address: site is designed for users of Microsoft to ensure their technology creationsare accessible to all, because Microsoft realizes “Accessibility enables people.” The site contains newsand articles, tutorials and demos for using Office 2010, Windows XP, Windows 7, and Windows Vista.Site also offers links and descriptions to products and guides, and help finding assistive technology.Strengths and Weaknesses:This site is amazing. Most users should have Microsoft, and the amount ofUDL resources available seem endless. The only weakness I could find is the more you review site, themore you want to learn, and could easily get caught up for hours.Web Validator: WAVE detected no accessibility errors.Accessibility/UDL: Site can be used to ensure accessibility for all, and teaches user how to use theseemingly endless supply of assistive technology located within Microsoft Office. Help is available for
  • 8. individuals with vision impairments, dexterity and mobility impairments, learning impairments, hearingimpairments, and language and communication impairments. This site is the offers the essence of UDL,the ability to reach all learners.Software Resources#1 Software Resource: WAVEURL Address: WAVE is a free web validator used to check accessibility of web pages, HTML,and files. User can install with Firefox, Dreamweaver, or install Wave into browser or toolbar. Purpose isto help designers with web accessibility issues.Strengths and Weaknesses: Easy to use, free, results within seconds. Weakness is that it highlights errorsand tells number of errors, but not as explained as some other validator sites.Web Validator: This source is a web validator.Accessibility/UDL: Easy to use, all user needs to do is cut and paste website into box. Site helps with UDLby checking accessibility in web sites, files, and HTML codes to ensure technology is accessible to alllearners.
  • 9. #2 Software Resource: Text 2 SpeechURL Address: Free site allowing user to download any text, which is then converted to MP3file which can be listened to, helping individuals with visual disabilities. User may use MP3 files for anyuse, even commercial use. Maximum length allowed is 5000 words, so long documents such as novelswould not be used.Strengths and Weaknesses: Free, easy to use, and could be used within schools for students to hear textaloud. Users can adjust volume, choose from 5 voices, and only have to cut and paste text to use.Weaknesses are the voices, they are robotic sounding.Web Validator: WAVE detects 3 accessibility errors. These include pop- up windows, java scriptelements, and form labels are missing.Accessibility/UDL: Software is free and easy to use. UDL purpose is for individuals with visual disabilitiesto hear text. Also, using Text 2 Speech will help creators to ensure accessibility to text.
  • 10. #3 Software Resource: Natural ReaderURL Address: Free software which can be used through web page or downloaded software orpurchased software. Prices range from $49.50 to $299. Choices range from personal use to developeruse. Software can be used for word, PDF, emails, or even webpage conversion from text into speech.Fourteen free voices are available on the website.Strengths and Weaknesses: Free online version easy to use, voices are pleasant and natural to user,tutorials are helpful, and culturally friendly. Weakness is that most of site is advertisement to upgrade tomore expensive versions.Web Validator: WAVE detected 68 accessibility errors for site. These include java script elements, eventhandler, missing alt text, problematic link text, and invisible content.Accessibility/UDL:Wonderful tool for students which is free and will convert any text for individuals withvisual disabilities. Software is simple for students to use, as well as designers to ensure accessibility oftheir document for screen readers. Multiple tutorials are present to assist with use. Choice of voicesavailable to user includes many nationalities.
  • 11. #4 Software Resource: Text CompactorURL Address: Free online text summarization tool. You can either type in box or cut and pastetext. User then slides to arrow to determine what percentage of text they want to compact. User thencan transfer text into document, screen reader, or translation device. This software can be used toreduce wordiness which causes cognitive overload for individuals with many types of disabilities.Strengths and Weaknesses: Site is easy to use, no distractions, amazing how it summarizes my wordswithout changing critical points within seconds. Weakness would be that I did not see any ability toupload a document to check.Web Validator: WAVE detected no accessibility errors.Accessibility/UDL: Site accessible, will ensure documents are accessible to screen readers. Can be usedfor individuals with sight disabilities or English Language Learners to ensure your text is brief, to thepoint, and cognitive overload can be avoided.
  • 12. #5 Software Resource: Voz meURL Address: Free online text to speech tool. Voz me is used to convert text to speech whenentered into box, then translating words to speech. User pushes marked button to create an MP3 file,which automatically plays. The ability to stop and restart speech is present, and when you clickunmarked icon, user is directed back to original site to enter more text.Strengths and Weaknesses: Free and converts text quickly. Weaknesses include that you can onlychoose a male or female voice, they are automated sounding, and speech automatically plays, youcannot start or stop.Web Validator: WAVE detects two accessibility errors. These include missing structure, invisible content,and form labels missing.Accessibility/UDL:Will translate into English, Spanish, Hindu, and a few other languages. Site is helpful tothose with visual disabilities, and designers who are creating accessible documents. However, site is notvery accessible when listening to speech. The buttons to stop and start speech are tiny and almostunnoticeable.
  • 13. #6 Software Resource: East End Literacy Reading Effectiveness ToolURL Address: tool is used to evaluate if your manuscript is within proper reading level foryour audience. User chooses short or long document, intended audience, and then answers 7 criteriaquestions to determine reading level.Strengths and Weaknesses: Site is very time consuming to use. I cannot visualize someone with adisability using the site, but it is a helpful site for developers. Strength is that is provides writer with anaccurate evaluation of the readability level of their text.Web Validator: WAVE detected 32 accessibility errors which need corrected. Errors appear to all becaused by missing structure.Accessibility/UDL: Tools is very useful when using text to ensure it will not cause overload for intendedaudience. If material is presented at too high of a grade level, cognitive overload will occur. Even thoughsite itself has many errors which need corrected and is difficult to use, grade level in relation to readersis an important aspect of avoiding overload. Difficult because have to actually hand count sentences.
  • 14. #7 Software Resource:Site point color accessibility toolURL Address: Check my Colors, Color Scheme Designer, Gray bit and Vis Check are five coloraccessibility sites which are linked to this site. The purpose of this site is to organize color issues, andsimplify checking for accessibility. I tried Check my Colors on a website I created last semester. It tested205 elements, and listed how many failures in relation to luminosity contrast ratio, brightnessdifference, and color difference.Strengths and Weaknesses: Site offers links to 4 different color accessibility tools. Each tool is for adifferent purpose. It would seem to make more sense to follow rules within WCAG guidelines, followedby using one of these tools to double check your accessibility. Having all four within one site may beoverwhelming. Results are technical.Web Validator: WAVE detected 37 accessibility errors within this site. Errors include problematic linktexts and incorrectly ordered headings.Accessibility/UDL: Site explains that 1 in 12 people have some kind of color deficiency. This tool will helpa designer to add color to their presentation, site, or document while still keeping it accessible to all.This site helps designers to make work accessible to individuals with colorblindness and well as manycolor deficits. It helps designer to adhere to WCAG guidelines.
  • 15. #8 Software Resource:Mount Focus onscreen keyboardURL Address: Mount Focus is an information system company which produces on screenkeyboards, ranging from standard to completely customized. Prices range from fifteen dollars to fourhundred and ninety five dollars. Free 30 day trial is available. Tutorials are available covering manyquestions users may have, and help with use of keyboard.Strengths and Weaknesses: Strengths are multiple options to design own keyboard to ensurecompatibility and success, but keyboards are rather expensive, depending on number of licensesaccompanying purchase.Web Validator: WAVE detected 2 accessibility errors. There are empty links and problematic link texts.Accessibility/UDL: Even though the site has link issues which need corrected, this is a good site forstudents with physical disabilities. On screen keyboards will reduce the cognitive load related to using amouse and traditional keyboard. Individuals with disabilities can download a free keyboard to test foraccessibility. Keyboards such as these give all individuals accessibility to technology.