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QM Standard 8: Accessibility and Finishing Touches


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An in-depth look at web accessibility and how to ensure that your courses are both functional and accessible to all learners.

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QM Standard 8: Accessibility and Finishing Touches

  1. 1. Quality Matters Boot Camp 2016
  2. 2.  Use the Quality Matters rubric and Standard 8 to help guide your course development  Discuss the importance of ensuring that all course materials and activities are accessible to all learners  Use specific methods such as video captioning to provide accessible materials to students  Examine courses for issues with regard to ease of use and readability, and provide alternatives for students with disabilities or other special needs
  3. 3.  Many of our students come to us with documented disabilities - some you can see and some you cannot  You may look at a student and not see anything different than any other student in your class
  4. 4.  Asperger syndrome  Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorders, or ADHD  Brain injury  Learning disabilities  Psychiatric conditions  Seizure disorders  Tourette syndrome
  5. 5.  Students who have the same medical diagnosis for their condition may have different preferences and accommodation needs  It is important to work with each individual to figure out what's best in a specific situation  What you learn from working with students with disabilities will help you work better with all students!
  6. 6.  Students with invisible disabilities may or may not need accommodations in a college classroom. If they do, it's the students' responsibility to self-disclose, provide documentation of the disabilities, and request accommodations
  7. 7.  Be respectful and open to working with students  Be willing to provide alternative content or more time on tests  Reach out to Disability Services for advice – ccess
  8. 8.  Day-to-day teaching can present various challenges regardless of who is in your class  Students have various abilities as well as learning styles  Try to consider everyone’s needs in your regular teaching plans  Ways to help accommodate ALL students:  Provide detailed lecture notes  Offer alternative projects or choice for assessments  Record your class sessions with Echo360  Offer virtual office hours with WebEx
  9. 9.  Electronic documents (websites, PDFs, etc) should be usable by all, including persons with disabilities  Contrary to popular belief, it’s not hard to keep accessibility in mind while developing your online materials
  10. 10.  Not everyone uses computers and the Internet in the same way, but everyone CAN use these tools successfully  Assistive technology can help people with visual, mobility, and other sensory, cognitive, or physical disabilities use technology effectively  Strategies that we employ in our online development can also make a user’s experience that much better
  11. 11.  TerrillThompson’s 10 SecondWeb AccessibilityTest 1. Try tabbing through the page. 2. If the page includes video content, try playing a video to see if it's captioned. 3. Run the website through the WAVE tool (  W3C-WAI Demo site:
  12. 12.  Very compatible with most screen readers like JAWS (see https://www.blackboard. com/Platforms/Learn/Re sources/Accessibility/Acc essibility- Resources.aspx)  But there are additional things you can do to make your course more accessible also
  13. 13.  When uploading and inserting a picture, be sure that is has a Description andTitle  This should be a simple title of no more that one or two sentences, or a summary phrase  Complex images like graphs should be described in more detail as a download or Item with text
  15. 15.  SoftChalk (30 day trial available)  Weebly  Microsoft Office tools (Word, Excel, PowerPoint can all be made accessible)  Evaluating other apps: uk
  16. 16.  Use Headings, premade layouts, and Style sheets  Use highly contrasting colors  Avoid “strange” fonts  Do not convey information through images alone  See if the program can be controlled by the keyboard, and if screen zooming is available  Is it easy to download and open?
  17. 17.  Some PDFs that are scanned from another source are actually images and cannot be read in a screen reader  Make sure your PDF files are actual text and tagged as well as possible  Use Styles (Headings, Paragraph, etc.) inWord if convertingWord to PDF  See ques/acrobat/  See ques/acrobat/converting for converting fromWord  For Accessible syllabus templates, visit ance/web-accessibility
  18. 18.  Captions can do wonders for many students in understanding a video, not just the deaf  AutomaticYouTube captions are not ideal – use your own or a transcript wherever possible  Lecture notes and transcripts should be able to take the place of the video if you use them  Making your own videos?  /tutorial-camtasia-8.html  http://www.synchrimedia.c om  Useful tips on caption and transcript development: ques/captions/  For long videos, contact Disability Services for caption service options
  19. 19.  When you use publisher- created content, there may or may not be a guarantee of accessibility  When in doubt, consult with the publisher directly about any concerns or student issues  Also don’t hesitate to contact the Disability Services Coordinator - s
  20. 20.  Testing and giving extra time  UseTest Availability Exemptions to help you set up extra time accommodations  Learn more:  students-with-disabilities/ 
  21. 21.  W3CWeb Accessibility Initiative:  Helpful video accessibility checklist: compliant-video-guide/video-accessibility- checklist  PDF accessibility:  Many other excellent articles on making various materials accessible:  WAVE accessibility checker for websites and HTML:
  22. 22.  PNW Disability Services:  Center forTeaching and Learning:  University ofWashington DO-IT ▪ Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking andTechnology ▪ AccessIT  University ofWisconsin – Madison DoIT: Division of InformationTechnology  Penn State University: AccessAbility
  23. 23. Reach us at:   for all workshop notes, links, and training needs