We had a cohort guest – Kim Ashbourne speak on web accessibility. This was an interesting one, as it obviously connects to accessibility in general and is something, I suspect, that the average able-bodied person thinks little about. It was only for the first time this year that I had a student with physical/mobility accessibility difficulties. I have never had a student with significant visual or auditory impairment that required considerations of accessibility. I was made aware of these accessibility issues well in advance, but I didn’t need to do any work to prepare – a colleague from Student Services provided me with all the physical space equipment and information I would need to remove any barriers to learning. It went unnoticeable – which it should be, as the goal of accessibility is equity.
I have also never, embarrassingly, considered who may be on the other side of my online presence, my open-course work, my future work. I don’t want to lock anyone out. I must do better.
Kim’s blog spot has lots of resources to get started on digital accessibility. And the way education is going, this is going to be important for me to consider moving forward. But I have much more to learn to make this a part of my thinking process. Here is one more source that has links out to other resources: AccessibleCampus. It’s a start.