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Colleges and universities have long been responsible for ensuring that persons with disabilities have equitable access to educational opportunities as well as the campus workplace. Federal and state laws require it. As technology has become ever more central to the development and delivery of institutional programs, resources, and services, the importance of providing an accessible technology environment across a college or university has grown. To the extent that technology is critical to the core functions of the institution, the accessibility of that technology to persons with disabilities has become a key factor in determining whether facilities, programs, and services are accessible to them.The 7 Things You Should Know About IT Accessibility details why higher education institutions need to pay attention to this issue.
Accessible Web Design
The EDUCAUSE Accessibility Guidelines guide is a working draft developed by the IT Accessibility Constituent Group at the request of EDUCAUSE staff. It is designed to provide guidance to authors, reviewers, and publishers associated with EDUCAUSE Quarterly (EQ), and to the larger EDUCAUSE community, on how to ensure that web content is accessible to all users, including those with disabilities.
Web Accessibility Toolkit ARL created this toolkit to help research libraries achieve digital accessibility.
North Carolina State University IT Accessibility The Office of Information Technology at North Carolina State University maintains this site as a primary source for the accessibility services and resources it offers. It provides links to relevant legislation and policies (institutional, state, and federal), web accessibility standards, and tools for web accessibility testing. The site also identifies the areas in which IT accessibility consultation services are available to the university community.
University of Washington Information Technology Accessibility This site offers a variety of resources on technology accessibility, including policies and standards (institutional, state, federal, and international), guidelines for producing accessible web pages, information and recommendations on procuring accessible IT, and links to tools and resource sites for addressing IT and web accessibility needs. Of particular note, the site hosts a list of higher education IT and web accessibility policies from nearly a dozen colleges and universities.
WebAIM A program of the Center for Persons with Disabilities at Utah State University, WebAIM (Web Accessibility in Mind) supports a comprehensive array of accessibility information, tools, application reviews, and training services. Institutions seeking to reevaluate and renew their approach to web accessibility can take advantage of WebAIM’s web accessibility implementation model. The program also provides free access to a tool for assessing the accessibility of any web content, WAVE, and the WebAIM blog includes reviews of assistive technologies for web access.
The U.S. Department of Justice's Americans with Disabilities (ADA) website includes the following information:
- Frequently Asked Questions About the June 29, 2010, Dear Colleague Letter
- A Guide to Disability Rights Laws
- ADA Standards for Accessible Design
- ADA Questions and Answers
The Australian Human Rights Commission website on World Wide Web and information accessibility includes information on;
Library Items on this Topic
EDUCAUSE Library Items for Accessibility
- What's Next for the LMS?
June 22, 2015
Today's LMS needs to be supplemented with (and perhaps later replaced by) a new digital architecture and new learning components—the NGDLE—to enable current transitions in higher educ…
- Technology Accessibility Findings
Technology Accessibility Findings True Technology Acces…
- Accessibility Policies and Practices
Accessibility Policies and Practices True As EDUCAUSE mem…
- The Next Generation Digital Learning Environment: A Report on Research
April 27, 2015
In partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, EDUCAUSE explored the gaps between current learning management tools and a digital learning environment that could meet the changi…
- TEACH Act Update
June 5, 2015
Last October, I posted about the agreement between higher education associations (including EDUCAUSE), the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), and the Association of American Publishers (…
- 7 Things You Should Know About Universal Design for Learning
April 6, 2015
Universal Design for Learning is a framework for the design of materials and instructional methods that are usable by a wide range of students. One aim of UDL is to provide full access …
- The Web Accessibility in Higher Education Project
February 23, 2015
Key Takeaways The Web Accessibility in Higher Education Project works across 25 Oklahoma institutions of higher education to provide resources and help campuses meet technology acces…
Accessibility True Colleges and universities have long…
- Technology, Equality and Accessibility in College and Higher Education Act (TEACH Act) Legal Analysis
September 16, 2014
The proposed Technology, Equality and Accessibility in College and Higher Education Act (“TEACH Act”) would authorize development of accessibility guidelines for digital instructional materia…
- Good Intentions, Bad Legislation
September 16, 2014
The authors of this opinion piece in Inside Higher Education , layout their their reasons for their oppostition to this piece of legislation, the TEACH (Technology, Equality and Accessibility …