Presentation Pair: Accessibility and Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

Wednesday, March 06 | 12:45PM–1:30PM ET
Session Type: Virtual
Beyond Captions: Making Online Learning Truly Accessible to Deaf Students
Accessibility is a common topic in academic institutions, but what does true accessibility really mean? Typical accommodation efforts often fail to consider different layers of access that students must navigate in order to fully access their online courses. We developed a model that breaks down the three layers of access barriers deaf students might encounter in an online learning situation: LMS barriers, course materials barriers, and communication barriers. We will present strategies and solutions for addressing the barriers associated with each layer in this thought-provoking and informative presentation.

Outcomes: Identify the access barriers that exist for online students with disabilities * Compare and contrast the language and learning differences between hearing and deaf students and describe what impact this has on online learning * Identify and apply strategies for addressing accessibility barriers that may be present in your online courses

Engaging Faculty in the Creation of Accessible Course Content
In spring 2018, we conducted a pilot of Blackboard Ally as part of a broader commitment to ensure the accessibility of our digital content. There were many positive results, including significant accessibility increases in the pilot courses. Valuable hands-on experience in making documents accessible empowered faculty, resulting in an unexpected but noteworthy benefit. We will discuss how we worked with faculty to address the barriers to creating accessible content: time, skills, and resources. We will also discuss how this pilot is driving course content accessibility and our plan for broader faculty engagement and development moving forward.

Outcomes: Identify challenges to faculty engagement in the creation of accessible course content * Explain solutions that result in faculty engagement in the creation of accessible course content * Understand the faculty perspective on creation of accessible course content that resulted from a well-supported tool


  • Caitlin McKeown

    Instructional Designer, North Carolina State University
  • Julia McKeown

    Assistant Professor, North Carolina State University
  • Megan Wuebker

    Computer & Information Analyst, University of Cincinnati

Resources & Downloads

  • Slides 1

    3 MB, pdf - Updated on 3/7/2019
  • Slides 2

    521 KB, pdf - Updated on 3/7/2019
  • Transcript

    91 KB, pdf - Updated on 4/19/2019
  • Recording

    Updated on 7/14/2021