What should faculty know about Technology and Accessibility?

Talking ComputerThere are many technologies and apps that are tremendous productivity tools for individuals with and without disabilities. There are also multiple barriers that may result from electronic and web content that is Not designed for usability by all levels of end-users. 

See the letter from the US Department of Justice and Department of Education that was addressed to College or University Presidents in June 2010 as well as the Frequently Asked Questions document that was issued in May 2011.

Examples of accessible technologies include features within operating systems, browser extensions and free applications that magnify, read out loud, or allow for voice recognition. There are also more expensive standalone products as well as a wide range of hardware that can afford greater usability to a wide variety of individuals. The trick is that many of these accessible technologies can only be used with content that is accessible. Sometimes an individual who is using assistive technology has a hard time accessing documents and websites if those resources are not designed with technology users in mind. Luckily, it is not hard to design for accessibility, it just takes awareness of what makes content more usable.

Learn more about accessible technologies within mainstream technologies as well as information regarding more specialized Assistive Technology.

Learn about how to create accessible content or See our page on Alternate Formats.

Faculty who want to learn more can also contact Disability Support Services to receive training and/or borrow loaner equipment to become better acquainted with the differences in how individuals interact with information.

 

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