This site was created to help instructors and instructional designers implement strategies for accessible course design. The goal is to provide information that is easily understandable to individuals who are not necessarily technology-oriented and may not know much about working with people with disabilities.
The tips on this website have been written to accommodate students who are deaf or hard of hearing, use screen readers for a vision impairment, have learning or physical disabilities, or are color blind. Many of these tips also improve learning for all students, which is called Universal Design.
A brief accessibility checklist encompassing the content on this site is provided as a Google Doc for printing purposes. This website contains instructions and rationale for the recommendations in the checklist.
In higher education, students with disabilities advocate for themselves. The Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) office works with students to document disabilities and put in place accommodations. If students do not have essential technology such as screen reader or magnification software, they can work with their SSD office or state vocational rehabilitation services to obtain it.
The responsibilities of instructors and instructional designers may vary depending on your campus. For instance, some campuses require instructors to caption their own videos while others do it for them. In addition, some campuses require all videos to be captioned proactively while others do not. It is important to understand the expectations on your particular campus. Contacting the SSD office is a good place to start.
Instructors and instructional designers usually do not need to help students identify disability-related technologies or obtain digital copies of books for them. This is done by the SSD office. However, supplemental documents and videos shared can be developed or edited to be more accessible and save students time.