Over the last thirteen months of the COVID-19 pandemic and resultant quarantine in the United States, we’ve all had to make a lot of adjustments in how we live, work, teach, and learn. As we look ahead to vaccinations, herd immunity, and the end of lockdown, many people are eager for a “return to normal.” But there are many people who have benefitted, even flourished, from remote working and learning. In education, strategies for remote learning can make classes far more accessible for some disabled students. Remote Learning & Accessibility One of the biggest benefits of remote learning is having
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Guest blog by Shar Carpenter Web accessibility provides all students the ability to equally access information and contribute to the class in an online environment. The World Wide Web Consortium (2021) defines web accessibility as the inclusive practice of ensuring everyone, including people with disabilities, can perceive, understand, navigate, and interact with websites and other online tools thus making it an essential aspect of online learning. In addition, web accessibility best practices embrace and work hand-in-hand with the scientific framework of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), a set of guidelines to ensure learning environments are inclusive, flexible, and reduce learning barriers
Open Educational Resources (OERs) are often praised for being more accessible than standard textbooks. In this context, accessibility often refers to low or no costs, or to how students can obtain the resource just by clicking a link. But accessibility also has another meaning: can disabled people access the resource? And in this sense, OERs are no better than the competition. According to UDL on Campus, a 2011 survey of OER textbooks found that nearly half the web-based textbooks (42%) had significant accessibility problems. And of the PDF textbooks, none were accessible to disabled users. This is a tremendous concern.
Introduction The Loyola Digital Accessibility Conference was organized by graduate students in the digital humanities program at Loyola University. The event drew presenters and attendees from all over the country, including a team who called in from University of California-Davis! Content Specialist Christine Scherer and Learning Designer Krissy Wilson represented the School of Professional Studies Distance Learning department on the Tackling Large Scale Accessibility panel. The presentations covered a wide range of issues, from accessibility of digital library resources to podcast transcripts to retrofitting inaccessible web pages. But there were common themes raised throughout the conversations. One theme was that
In this month’s webinar, Content Specialist Christine Scherer explained the ins and outs of captions and transcripts. Topics covered included the benefits of captions and transcripts, how captions and transcripts are created, why scripting is so important, and different types of captioning. To learn more, visit the DL Website’s Accessibility page! You can view a recording of the webinar on Panopto.