Accessibility at ISU: Top 10 Tips to Make Your Online Course Accessible

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- [Ann Marie] It's wonderful to see so many of you here this afternoon, and I think it's a fantastic opportunity now with the fourth session that we've had related to digital accessibility. When CELT got involved with the initiative, our real focus is on how do we support faculty in meeting the multiple needs that they have, and in particular, in this case, how can we help them be successful as they meet the needs of creating their course content, to make it in a more accessible way? And so the focus of today's session is the 10 Tips for Creating Accessible Course Content, our real focus is for faculty members.

Just to help frame, kind of, what we're going to be doing today, if you take a look in your packet, you should have a handout that is the Individual Action Plan. And our intent in creating something like this is, so by the time we're done with the workshop, you've got some actionable items that you can then go back and either work with the faculty member on, or you as a faculty member, have something that you can then start to work on. So as we go this session today, if you kind of think about some of the different opportunities that you have to promote digital accessibility in your course. The other thing that I think is equally important is to spend a little time thinking about what some barriers are that are going to limit or make it more difficult for you to do that. And then, if you can even think about some strategies to overcome those, then you're already a step ahead, being able to start implementing something. And then the last part is kind of scaffolding for success. As a faculty member, I know the commitments on my time are incredible. The expectations on what I need to do just to get ready to teach are very high. And now, as I'm framing it in my own personal class, how can I make my content more accessible, I'm realizing how much time it's going to take, particularly as I'm using existing content and trying to revamp it, or something like that.

I've had the opportunity over the last couple of weeks to be creating a new online garden design course with a graduate student in my program. And because this is such an important thing, we have gone all in on making this content accessible. And I can tell you right now, firsthand experience, it's probably taken me about four times as long as it would have if I would have just done it the way I've done it in the past. The end result is important, and I'm really glad we're doing it. But I think, as a faculty member who's going through this right now, I can speak to the fact that it does take time. That's why we created the Scaffold for Success, knowing you can't do it all at once. So identify those low-hanging fruit, if you will, to get started.

So, what we want to talk about today is why it's important to make the online content accessible, talk about some guiding questions that can inform you during your course design, and then we'll get to these 10 tips, again, we try to make it so it's very digestible type of information, and quite honestly, built on the existing things that have been discussed in this seminar series. And then finally talk a little about those next steps. One of the things that I think is important as you're starting to frame the work you're going to be doing is think about how you can be pro-active, rather than reactive in creating your content to be more accessible. It's not just about responding to accommodation requests. It's really about a mind-shift in how do you make your course materials as accessible to as many students as possible, knowing that there's a whole range of different needs that they might have.  So I think framing it from that as an initial starting point can help make it so, ultimately, it'll be more successful, but you'll have less retrofitting and less reactive work that you'll have to do. We were in a session with Steve Moats yesterday from the student disability office, and they were talking about closed-captioning. And it was a really interesting webinar, but he was talking about the number of minutes that their unit is doing on closed-captioning in a reactionary way, now, as students have identified as needing an accommodation. So it was just interesting context, particularly knowing we were talking about this today.


So these are two of the questions, quite honestly, that I used when I was framing this most current work on this online design course, was, how does the course format and the course content support accessibility, or limit accessibility? And honestly, there were a couple of things we wanted to do, but in doing that, it really would have limited accessibility, so we had to rethink that, and actually, one of the exercises we chose not to include because of that. The other thing, I think is important is thinking about what prior skills and technology, skills and knowledge, I guess, that the learner is going to need in order to be successful. Oftentimes, as I'm talking to faculty, I'm hearing that they want to do this or that in their class, bring in a variety of different technologies, but unfortunately, not all of our students have that proficiency that we think that they might have. They might be quite talented in using their personal social media, or personal technologies, but when it really comes to doing some of the other things they may not have that ability. I see that in my class. So, you know, if there's an easy way to do it that gives you the same information, I would consider doing that as opposed to something that's more complicated. It may look cooler, but in the end if it doesn't really improve student learning it's probably not worth it, and ultimately could be frustrating for the students.

So with that context, the next thing I want to do is move into our 10 Tips. And so, on our presentation that will be shared out, we have our list of resources at the back. And Laura has done a fantastic job compiling a lot of these ideas, and kind of narrowing it down into 10 things that we think people can really move on right away.

And the first thing is planning. I think one of the most important takeaway messages, if you are a faculty member, or if you're going to be working with a faculty member, is to do this planning up front. Think what your online teaching and learning strategy is going to be. It needs to be a little bit more focused, and not something that just kind of willy-nilly happens when you walk into the classroom. It really does make you frame your teaching in a different way. We've got four different examples that can help frame that. And one of the first ones is to think about those different course elements. So this is this kind of, going back to the drawing board, starting from the beginning, thinking about the activities, the assessments, the lectures, whatever those elements are, and then follow a consistent structure and routine throughout the course. What I hear oftentimes from students as I talk to them is, I've got five different classes, from five different faculty, and each class is designed in a completely different way. I don't know where to find the syllabus. I mean, these are students who are motivated and engaged, and want to get started in the class, and they don't know where to start. We will never get to a uniform structure at this institution, I get that. However, if you, within your course, can make steps so it's very clear that you start with Module One, there's an overview, there's a lecture, has a video, some slides, there's some assignments, it's clear where the resources are if there's an online discussion, what task they need to do, and then a quiz. So anything you can do from an organizational standpoint can really help the students. And those of you with expertise in instructional design, here's where you can really bring that to bear for the faculty members, so they start to understand that really, it does matter how it's organized. And you don't have that luxury of speaking to a student in class, necessarily, and answering any of the questions they might have. It needs to be really clear up front.

The other thing has to do with Universal Design for Learning. So students learn in many different ways. There's many different things that are going on as they're processing material, so if you can take that into account when you're designing assessments and assignments and learning activities in the course, you're going to reach a majority of the students in your class at different ways, so they can be successful in the class. So, talking about the why of learning, the what of learning, and the how of learning. And we have some resources on our website about the Universal Design for Learning, I direct you to that. Really, it links out to the institution, or a center at the University of Washington, who has done a lot of work around this. It's just a fantastic resource. It kind of makes you frame the activities you'll do in your class a little bit differently.

One of the other things to consider is that the students have adequate time to complete what they need to for the course, either the activities or the assessments. This tool was developed by RICE University and I'm hoping to get in touch with them to talk to them about creating something similar to this that can also be used for online course content. But oftentimes faculty will ask, well how much time is this going to take, or how much time should I allocate for it? If you've been teaching for awhile, you've got a bit of a gut feeling about how long it will take. But this is a really great tool that, based on a body of research, you can type in the type of activity they're going to be doing, how many papers, or how many pages in a written paper, and then get a real estimate of how much time it's going to take. I think, oftentimes, students get frustrated, lack, they don't know what to do next. Because they've allocated a certain amount of time to do something, and they just can't get through it all because it's more complicated. What I like about this, is it talks about the density of what it is they're going to be reading, so something that's quick and easy to read is going to take less time. But something that is a meaty, involved research article, you need to account for more time. So just a good starting point if you're not really sure how much time. One thing I've yet to do, and I'm planning to do it in the spring semester, is do this to my course, on those different elements I have, and see if what I'm expecting them to do is in align with how much the research is showing it should take them to do. I'll be interested to see the results.

And then, the fourth kind of framing question is, making sure that the instruction and those learning activities allow for adjustment based on student feedback. We really support faculty doing a plus-delta, midterm reflection from the students to get feedback on what's working well, and what's not. You can make changes in the middle of the course and then it's going to make it better for the students. On the other hand, if you wait until the end of the course evaluation, at that point it's too late for them, hopefully you'll get some feedback, you can do something for your next group of students. But build whatever your assessment or activity is, measure how well the students do on it, get some feedback, learn from that and then come back to building it again. So really, it becomes this continuous and iterative cycle.

The second tip really goes back to planning as well, and really ties in with the term "Constructive Course Alignment". And this is something that we've been working a lot on in CELT, is we've been working with faculty, in starting from your end-game and working backwards. Oftentimes when I work with faculty, they want to talk about content. Here's the content I need to cover, and then they'll figure out the other pieces afterwards. But if you can start with thinking about what your overall course goal is, and then identify your learning objectives that map to that goal, determining how you're going to assess and evaluate that, and then coming back up to what the actual teaching approach is, you're going to have a well-aligned course. I did a complete re-haul of my course a few years ago, it's a course I'd been teaching for a number of years, made a few changes here and there and over time I realized what I was doing wasn't quite what I wanted them to be able to get out of the course. Took a lot of time, but ultimately I think the course ended up being stronger.

And so I created this type of a flowchart. I'm very linear in how I think, so this helped me. But I started with the overall learning outcome as it relates to the course catalogue description, and then I identified four or five different learning objectives, identified different assignments that I would do that would map to that, and then the teaching approach. As I've learned more about accessibility and the importance of that, I have started to add different types of assignments and assessments in an effort to reach students with different abilities and different expertise in their communication. So I've added some assignments that are written, and some assignments that are verbal. So I think that's been a nice addition to the course, too. So this is really quite easy to do. I mean, you can just scratch it out on a big whiteboard and kind of move things around until you get what you want, but it was a very valuable exercise, and I just speak from experience on that.

Real quickly, for those of you who are teaching, I'd like you to think for just a minute about the different goals or skills or things that you want the students to do in your course. Can you identify some things right now, maybe, that you're doing in your course that could be an obstacle for students with these types of disabilities, visual, auditory, cognitive, motor, or English as a second language. Does anybody have an example that comes to mind?

So showing media, such as a video or something like that.

Any other ideas or examples? Yeah, so something in Blackboard that maybe isn't organized well enough for a person who has visual issues to be able to see how to move through it and to answer the questions. And we'll talk a little bit about that. Leveraging some of the technology that's already out there can really help make that a lot easier using the formatting features, so you use Level One Headings, Level Two Headings, and that kind of thing, yeah.

So those are certainly a couple of examples of things that can already be in your courses that with a little bit of thought, you can certainly make it so it's more accessible.

The third tip comes into the assessment and evaluations. And so I want to differentiate a little bit between the two, but the idea is that both of these types of things you're doing in your course will support the overall learning outcomes. Again, it gives you a reason to do the certain things in your class, it makes you more efficient.

So assessment and evaluation often is used interchangeably. Couple of things I just want to show, so you can understand a little bit about the difference. Assessment is ongoing. It tends to be a little bit more individualized, can be a little bit more informal. Evaluation, on the other hand, is judgmental, it usually provides closure. Examples of that would include quizzes, exams, and things like that. So the assessment may be an input you give to a student on a first draft of an assignment. Or they work together on a problem set, talk about it, and then come up with a solution, and then again, there's some feedback. They're not being scored on it, but they certainly are working through the process. Regardless, both of them require some type of criteria, and that they are evidence-driven. So you need to have a little bit of structure to your assessment in order to be effective. And if you've done your assessment well, ultimately the students will be well-prepared when they get to that evaluation piece. So going back to that earlier flowchart, thinking about your assessments and your evaluations is an important part of the overall planning process.


The fourth tip refers to the Quality Matters Framework. How many of you have already heard about Quality Matters? About half, okay, great. Quality Matters is a national framework that's been well-developed, it's been vetted, it's got a lot of solid research behind it. It's something that we're getting started to promoting more here at Iowa State through CELT and Lesya and Allan are our two lead people, who are really working on that. And Darrin, who's one of our newest staff members, has some great expertise on using Quality Matters from UNI. So we'll be learning a lot from that. But essentially what it is, it's a framework, it's been used in the peer-review process, and it can be used to help you frame your overall online course. And I know there's a link to this on the ELO website. So you can go in, the image on the right is the Quality Matters rubric, so you can start to see the different components that make it up.

So how does Quality Matters help? So just in a nutshell, without going into the entire rubric, really, you can use it in these different eight categories that it has as part of the rubric. So the first thing is the course overview and introductions. The next is the learning objectives, which I've already talked about in your course design and your course alignment, assessment and measurement, instructional materials, course activities and learner interaction, course technology, learner support, and then accessibility and usability. So those are the five, or excuse me, the eight different sections to the rubric, and each one of them has a set of subsections.

So one of the things that you can do is use that as a framework, either in evaluating your own course, or when you're working with a faculty member, to help them evaluate their course. Just as an example to show, I want to talk a little bit about Standard Eight. This is the last one that was on the list on accessibility and usability. And you can see there are five different sub-parts to it that build out that whole accessibility section on the rubric. So the course navigation facilitates ease of use, that's something I kind of talked about early on, too, about how you organize each module. The information is provided on accessibility of technologies that are required for the course, so if you have something that a student is going to have to listen to, where can they get help making it so that they can listen to it if they had an auditory disability. Those types of things are addressed here. The course provides alternate means to access the course materials, so you can reach diverse learners. So for example, in the course I'm working on right now, I have my PowerPoint presentation, we've recorded an audio to go along with it, in addition to that we've captioned it, and then in addition to that we will have PDFs with the entire transcript available as well. So you can either listen to it, you can read it, you can do a combination of both of those.

And actually, Zayira shared an article with me just yesterday about the increased learning gains that students showed when they were watching a video that was captioned, as opposed to the same video that wasn't captioned. So hopefully we can find a way to maybe share that more broadly, it was just really intriguing to me to realize how much value that added to the course.

So, then the other two items are listed there as well. Now, one thing to keep in mind is, Quality Matters, in following this list, doesn't say that you will then, by default, meet all of the state, federal regulations for compliance with accessibility. But it's a starting point that you can use when you start doing, you know, reframing your course or working in a particular area. In order to really be sure that you're in compliance, Zayira would obviously be able to help you, guide you to those locations to make sure that you've got all those pieces. But if you don't even know where to start, this, I think, is a really great framework.


So I mentioned that Quality Matters is something we're working on here at Iowa State through CELT, and you can see one of the things that we've done is developed kind of a three-track process to support faculty in using Quality Matters, or kind of getting up to speed on it. Lesya's spent a lot of time developing this, getting feedback from faculty and other people who are involved, but really, we've got kind of three different tracks. The first track is just kind of dipping your toe in the water and getting started, learning a little bit about it. The important thing to remember is that for each of these tracks is that there is an outcome that we're hoping you'll have. And we firmly believe that any time you do something you've got something as a result of that that you can then move onto a next step. But we recommend that you would take these two different online Quality Matters courses, capitalize on some of the resources that we've created, and then Track Two is in a little bit more depth, and then Track Three.

And I will say that this is available on our website, so you can take a look at it and get more detail. If you have any questions you can certainly contact Lesya or Allan, and they can give you a little bit more information. One of the things that we're doing in CELT is providing some financial resources for this. So if you decide that you want to take these tracks, or you want to take these online Quality Matters courses, once you sign up and you take it and you can show that you've completed it, we'll reimburse your unit for 50% of the cost of that. We do it that way so everybody's got a little bit of skin in the game. We've done it in the past where we pay for everything and we found a very poor completion rate, and so we're just trying to be mindful stewards of our funding, and so, if you're interested do let us know. But we would be more than happy to set you up with that and to help pay for part of that cost. I think our end goal is to get a community of learners and people who have gone through this and are using Quality Matters in their courses in a really interesting way so we can continue to learn from each other and continue to make our courses well-designed and well thought out, and also accessible as well.

So with that, I'm gonna turn it over to my colleague Laura, and she's going to talk about the other five tips!

- [Laura] Thank you! Okay, we'll switch, it'll be great! Alright, so I get the wonderful opportunity to talk about the tech stuff, the stuff that I like to play with.

And so for tip five, and we already kind of talked about it a little bit, was making sure you use consistent page titles and headings. And that's not just in a Microsoft Word document, a PDF document, that's also within your Blackboard learning course, or if you happen to use Moodle, in your Moodle course. And an example would be, this is formatted without headings. And this is actually screenshot, I should let you know, because if someone took a reader to it it would be not fun. But then, this would be a properly formatted heading. And so you can see Heading One, and Heading Two, and if you didn't know it, you can easily google it, or you could go to the Digital Access website for Iowa State and you can learn how to do the styles within Word, and within Blackboard. It's basically just HTML code, for those of you who love HTML like I do, and I do, I do love it. It's a secret hobby.

So Tip Six is using alt-text, captions, and/or long descriptions on all the images. Now, if you were at last week's presentation, we talked a little bit more at length about this, and I only used tulips because of my wonderful colleague, she happens to be a horticultural person. Hor-ti-cul-turalist. Yeah, that's a good word. Sorry that was a very long word. But, so the difference in the alt-tags, and you can do alt-tags in Blackboard and also in any Word or in any IOS Mac operating system, you'd be able to alt-tag it. And if it's a story about tulips, you would just say, it's a story about tulips. And it's spring and it's wonderful. If it's for your hort class, you obviously could use, is the term "genus"? Botanical name, thank you, botanical name. Or if it's just a decorative image, you just would use the two little quotes as your alt tag, and the reader would skip over it then.

You're going to avoid color-coding. Now this is an example that we obtained through Three Play Media. This, right here. Now let's take a look at this. So, red team and green team, your office hours are provided below! So if you are color blind, would you even know what color, which one is red team, which one is green team? I have no idea. So really, take into consideration how you show your colors. If color is important for the students to understand what you are trying to convey, make sure that you label it with the color as well. So, you can see here, red team, green team. That's kind of, it didn't take too much for us to add those few words.

Another thing is sufficient color contrast. This is probably my favorite thing ever. When you take a look at these two PowerPoints, and a lot of instructors will just upload their PowerPoints and have their students just take a look at their PowerPoints, but if it has all this, just look at the difference here. What's the contrast, which one's easier to read? I mean, that's pretty easy to figure out, right? The other thing to consider is utilizing a color contrast analyzer. And this one from the Paciello, I can't say it right, "Paseeyello", probably, Group? And the weblink is at the very end of this presentation, you can download it, it can go onto Mac or onto Windows, it's a free-standing app. You can actually use the color-picker and grab the colors, and what I learned was, with white over red, so this is the standard, and if you know web, you know that CC0000 is the red of our institution, it passes with a double-A, which is what our university wants to do, but it doesn't pass with a triple-A. So if it was smaller font, that would be bad if we were on the triple-A. So it just helps you, easy, easy thing to download, and it's free. It's not a million dollars or anything.

Using descriptive and unique hyperlinks. Another thing to really consider, and something that makes me, even, crazy, is taking a look at these three things here. Accessible, at the top, so if you wanted to go to the CELT Incorporating Content into Your Course website, you know exactly what you're going into. You know that you're going to click on that and it's a website. Not accessible is the old version of a lot of the sites that I used to manage, that would say, "More Info". And that's something that, you don't know, really, what you're really clicking on. You don't know what information is going to be there. It's like a surprise, a hidden box, but that's not really what you want. And another one is recognizing that a full hyperlink, I mean, look how long and crazy that very long weblink is, that hyperlink is. If I had a reader, a screen-reader, it would go, "H-t-t-p-colon-backslash- back, or forward slash, blah blah blah". Could you imagine? Ugh, it's exhausting! And you'd have to sit through that to get to the next part. But, I mean, there are readers that can skip, but still, what a pain.

Creating accessible multimedia. We already kind of talked about that a little bit with Anne Marie's current course, and believe me, I've seen the work she's putting into this course with this grad student, and it's gonna be an awesome course, and it is going to be incredibly accessible compared to previous courses that she has put online, although those were pretty accessible as well. But this one, I would say, is very compliant. But as we stated, if it's audio, you should have a transcript. If it's video, and video only, so if it's a lab presentation that you're videotaping, you need to describe what is happening, you know, "mix the green solution with the yellow solution," you know. You know what I'm saying? Cuz it has to have that. What if you didn't have that, and they put the wrong thing in the wrong-- that would be bad. Because then it blows up or something.

Anyway. Audio and video, you're gonna want closed-captions, text transcript and video description. And then and example, and I actually shared this at a workshop that I went to, and Dino went to, last week, on Friday, was an example of really having that multi-media approach, is, for your syllabus, having it available at least a week early would be wonderful, especially for students, so they know what they're getting into, and if your course is something, like the way that you have the objectives, the outcomes, or the teaching approach is not appropriate, they could actually find a different course to take, or find a different way to learn those things. But, you could walk through your syllabus in a video, you could create a script for that video, you could caption the video using the script, caption it very easily through YouTube or other, if we have our own video software at some point. Post the video into your Blackboard learning course, and then post the accessible PDF. Just think of all the ways that your students could get all the information, even before they step a foot into your classroom. Or before the class even starts.

So next steps! As Anne Marie discussed at the very beginning, the Scaffold for Success, our individual action plan, digital accessibility, online course design, we have it as a PDF as well in your folder, we hope that you take the time to really kind of brainstorm the opportunities that you have to promote digital accessibility and implement it in your course, as well as brainstorming those barriers and strategies, and then setting up a few achievable objectives to start.

And do we want to do that right now? Just take a few moments? Just take a few moments and jot down, just one thing that you, if you are an instructional designer, one thing that you haven't considered before and that you want to consider, or start to implement, or if you're faculty, just something that you can take, like the syllabus, and being able to, kind of, do all those different things to it.

- [Anne Marie] Yes, let's take about, take about seven or eight minutes here and see, and for those of you who are working with faculty as an instructional designer, if you could even think about those examples where you see barriers in the faculty that you've worked with, I'd like to do a quick share around when we get back together. So we'll take about five, six minutes or so.

- [Laura] Yeah, so the question was, for print, how do you do it? And the answer really is, there isn't a standard, I can't find one yet. We should create one, it'll be great. But, so what I've been doing, for this presentation in particular, is website, and then, if I was using a screen reader, okay, I could skip it, or it could just click right on the link. If you had it downloaded.

- [Participant 1] What I've been recommending to our faculty is that, if they have a document that has a lot of links, creating a separate page at the end that has all of the links out. So that's one thing. Yeah, the full URL.

- [Laura] See, there's a standard there. Now we got it.

- [Anne Marie] Okay, let's go ahead and come back together real quick. And so I'm interested if somebody has an example of an opportunity to promote digital accessibility in your course, that you've thought of, and also, if you've identified a potential barrier within that. Anyone?

- [Participant 2] Faculty members are always have constraints on their time, so that's one of the main, main barriers. Second is, financial support. If, at all, they want to do that, and they don't have the time, they want to hire somebody else, where do they get the funding or the money from? Tools and resources, again, do they have the appropriate tools for them. Recently I've been working with an Engineering faculty, he was asking me, so how do I, description for my images. Is there anything that will do that for me? Because I cannot, I may not be able to transcribe or write descriptions for each, because I'm used to making a diagram and explaining it. And when I'm transcribing, is there any application that will do that for me? Awareness is another thing, because one of the common questions, or not question, thought that I come across is, so we have the student disability office. If something comes up, I can always direct the student there. Why do you want me to put all this extra time and effort in making a course accessible when I have this resource available with me? So that's a common thought that we have to really deal with, on a daily basis. Digital barriers, when it comes to making the course accessible, the first thing I can think of is, the course syllabus. That's the thing that each and every course needs to have. That could be a good starting point, is to make that document accessible, like by using headers, and hyperlinks and things like that.

- [Laura] Great, great, thank you. Yeah, I think part of, a couple of the points there are things that are so much broader than just that individual conversation with the faculty member, things like resources, things like cultural change, how do we make it, that's kind of that proactive versus reactive. And I think that right now we're at an interesting time at Iowa State. I think that we're starting to get a critical mass of resources and people and efforts to be able to start making some of those changes. But I would anticipate that that would continue to be something that will be a barrier, I would say, broadly across campus. Anybody else have an example of something in their course and potential barriers that they've identified?

- [Participant 3] I work as an instructional designer with language courses, courses that teach French, Spanish, and one of the barriers that we have with the Chinese course that I'm designing right now is whether we provide captions or subtitles for the videos that the professor is creating. The rationale, and because I come from the language background, I understand the rationale that she has for not having those subtitles, and it's the fact that with those videos, she wants the students to learn or practice listening comprehension. The moment that you put the captions, the students are not able to learn, you know, to train the ear. And she also raised this concern about, sorry, I have to cheat because I don't know, that is, the multimedia learning principles. So she talks about giving the students too much in the video to focus on. Is the language, which is characters, that's Chinese. Is the spoken version, and is also, the text. So when we discuss this, I suggested whether, if we're not going to give the students this subtitles in your video, maybe we can provide an additional transcript or text or something that accompanies the video. But her concern is that students will go into that text, they will read that in English, and they will not practice listening comprehension. If we do that in Chinese, the level of the students is not good enough to actually read the characters. So, I really don't know what to do next. That's my story.

- [Laura] That's easy, right? Thanks Nadia. Yeah, that's an interesting thing. So we've talked about these federal requirements, to have the video and to have it captioned, but in the context of teaching language, it can actually be counter-intuitive to what the instructor's trying to accomplish. So that's something that we'll have to be thinking about as we move forward, about, it can't always just be a one-shoe-fits-all type of a thing.

- [Participant 2] So, I'm working with another instructor and she's teaching a legal writing, legal research and writing skills. And one of the critical components of the course is the students' ability to take notes as they watch a video, and that's another case where she's very reluctant to have a transcript, because she's like, if they have a transcript they will, they don't learn that skill of taking notes. So what do we do in that case? So that's another on similar lines.


- [Anne Marie] Yeah, sounds like there's an opportunity for a workshop.

- [Laura] Great, yeah, I would say that, these are just some really good examples of the complexity of the types of things we're talking about. So although, in our presentation, you know, we gave you ten tips, they're ten tips. They're certainly not going to be the answer to every question. But if you're not sure where to start, or if you're working with a faculty member who may be unsure where to start, this can at least start to frame some of those initial conversations.

The other things that, you know, kind of ties this all together are some of the resources that you have available in your packet. So this is material that talks about the Quick Guide, included in there is information about how to do certain things, where to go to get more resources. I think one of the things to keep in mind is that, as a faculty member, you don't have to do this by yourself. There are resources on campus. Although as we talked about, there may not be enough resources yet, but there certainly are some people and some expertise that people can tap into to be successful.

The other thing, again, I just want to direct you to, for those of you who have been to all four workshops, you already know this, but for those of you who are new, I just want to plug this website that Zayira has created as a great resource tool for you, and gives you some very specific things on how to do things. I'll say that when I first got started doing some of that, I wasn't exactly sure how to do some of the different things, and it was a text or an email that she had sent out, and I thought, Okay, I could try that. So I just pulled in one of my documents and I did the different things to it, and it was pretty slick, and it was pretty fast. So, just so you know, I just want to draw your attention to that as an additional resource for you as well. And so with that, we've planned for about 10, 15 minutes or so of extra questions, and we've got a little bit of time, so we're happy to answer those.

- [Lori] I'm Lori Mickle, I work with Student Disability Resources as a program coordinator over at Exam Accommodations. So you were discussing, maybe the student's not going to listen in the same way, to try to sort out what's being said. But, when you talked about character recognition for the students in reading Chinese, and then also being able to hear it. A lot of times, and I'm taking this from, say, someone who has a hearing impediment, so the hard of hearing or deaf. So, while they sort of maybe hear something, they have a really hard time picking out what exact word you're saying. So when you put the text with the sound, if they're really wanting to learn it, and really trying to learn it, putting the text with the sound would help them in two ways. It'll help them identify the sound that goes with that text, but it also helps them identify what sound she's actually making. And so, I kind of understand the argument, but on the other side, it's a double-way of learning the same information. So I kind of disagree with the argument. Does that make sense?

- [Participant 3] I think Nadia herself brought up the terminology captions, which is the requirement by the law, as it stands right now. It's in the same language. Subtitles are in a different language. I, myself, and I'm, this is just the case of one, I might not be hard of hearing, even though I'm, I don't know, but! I am an English as a second language learner. Throughout my years before coming to the United States, I would go to the movies and see movies with subtitles in Spanish. I don't think I learned as much English as when I came here and was unable to look at those subtitles in Spanish. So I don't know, it would, I think we need to conduct more research on what's best practice in that sense, but the requirement is only to provide captions in the same language as the speaker. So I guess that might help a little bit.


- [Participant 4] I would be interested to hear from people, how they handle a situation working with a faculty or it could be a client, you're doing a webpage for marketing or something, when they want to do something that you know is not accessible, or they brought a brand new technology to you, you've never seen it before, and it's probably not accessible or you haven't looked at it yet, how do you work with them? I mean, you just say, no you can't do that? Do you say, here's what I recommend? What do you do?

- [Laura] Zayira had an opinion, so.

- [Zayira] Well, I would like to say, No! But I can't because of their resistance to hear, and that is not going to be good. So my approach to it is I guide them to the resources, or the requirements, and, you know, it's not only a requirement, think about things that are accessible to all kinds of users. Move away from the medical model of disability and focus on disability, and making our content either pedagogical or public content that we provide to users all over the world, arguably, making it accessible to all kinds of users who use our websites through a mobile, it might be in a place where there's a lot of light and they can't see because there's not enough contrast. Things like that. So there's, you know, sometimes you come across a lot of resistance, and I understand that, but try to guide people into empathizing and understanding the business benefit of accessibility.

- [Participant 5] I came late, but I looked over your presentation before, and I know you also talked about objectives and outcomes at the beginning of your presentation. What I usually do when I work with my faculty, I usually go back to objectives and outcomes. If they particularly want to use a particular software, and then, ask them, what do you want to accomplish by using this particular software? And if it's not matching what they stated in the objectives and outcomes, I suggest a couple of new, or a couple of technologies that I know that can handle what they would like to do. And then compare and contrast advantages and disadvantages, based on the accessibility purposes, and other things that they would like to achieve. And then let them decide what they would like to use. And if they still want to insist, that's not the case most of the cases, then say, Look, I stated what the advantage is and disadvantage is, and you still want to use this particular software, you will be dealing with the consequences. But it's not empathizing. Yes, it's important, but I think opening up the communication channel is also very very important. And usually, most of the cases, it works pretty well.

- [Ann Marie] Great, thanks for your comment. Yeah, I would second that. I think sometimes people come wanting to do something, or thinking that they know what they want to do, and they just don't know what the other options might be. And being able to have some of those insightful discussions and conversations, and help them to understand the pros and the cons, I think, is a really important part of that teaching and learning conversation that needs to happen. Well with that, we have come to the end of our session, so I am happy to turn it over to Zayira, if you have any final comments? No?

- [Zayira] No, thank you so much, this has been great.

- Alright, thank you all for coming.