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Able Tech

Accessible Distance Education Resources

Distance learning courses may include web-based materials, videotapes and other multimedia, printed materials, teleconferences, telephone conferences, and email or chat rooms. These courses should be accessible both to the students who use them and to the instructors who create them.

DID YOU KNOW? Students with disabilities earn about the same number of associate degrees or vocational certificates, but fewer bachelors degrees, than students without disabilities.

The following are resources for making distance learning courses accessible to people with disabilities.

Developed by the University of Toronto and The Trace Research and Development Center, A-Prompt is a tool to help Web authors make their sites accessible to people with disabilities.

Access to multimedia technology by people with sensory disabilities. National Council on Disabilities (1998).

ADA accessibility requirements apply to Internet Web pages. (1996). The Law Reporter, 10 (6), 1053-1084.

Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
Civil rights legislation for U.S. citizens.

Bar, L. & Galuzzo, J. (1999). The accessible school: Universal design for educational settings. Berkely, CA:MIG Communications.

Berge, Z. L., & Collins, M.P. (Eds.). (1995). Computer mediated communication and the online classroom: Distance learning. Creskill, NJ: Hampton Press.

Bobby at the Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST)
A free service to help Web page authors identify and repair significant barriers to access by individuals with disabilities.

Burgstahler, S. E. (1997). Teaching on the Net: What's the difference? T. H. E. Journal, 24(9), 61-4.

Burgstahler, S. (2002). Distance learning: Universal design, universal access. Educational Technology Review, 10(1).

Center for Applied Special Technology
An educational, not-for-profit organization that uses technology to expand opportunities for all people, including those with disabilities.

The Center for Universal Design
A national research, information, and technical assistance center that evaluates, develops, and promotes universal design in housing, public and commercial facilities, and related products.

Closing the Gap Resource Directory
Assistive technology for people with disabilities.

Connell, B.R., Jones, M., Mace, R., Mueller, J., Mullick, A., Ostroff, E., Sanford, J., Steinfeld, E., Story, M., & Vanderheiden, G. (1997). The principles of universal design. Raleigh, NC: North Carolina State University, Center for Universal Design.

Distance Learning Clearinghouse
Education, technology and legal resources on distance education from the Univeristy of Wisconsin-Extenstion Distance Education Clearinghouse.

Distance education: Access guidelines for students with disabilities (1999). Sacramento, CA: Chancellor's Office, California Community Colleges.

Dixon, J.M. (1996). Leveling the road ahead: Guidelines for the creation of WWW pages accessible to blind and visually handicapped users. Library Hi Tech, 14(1), 65-68.

DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology)
Comprehensive collection of technology access issues including videotapes, computers, web pages and telecommunications equipment.

Electronic Text Center, University of Virginia -Extensive on-line archive of electronic texts and images.

Electronic Text Center, Directory of

Equal Access to Software and Information (EASI)- Information and resources focused on access to technology for people with disabilities.

Ferrell, L.A., Persiccchitte, K.A., & Lowell, N.L. (2000). Distance learning technologies for blind and visually impaired students. Technology and persons with disabilities conference proceedings, March 20-25. Los Angeles, CA: California State University at Northridge.

Guidelines for Developing Accessible Learning Applications

Paist, E.H. (1995). Serving students with disabilities in distance education programs. The American Journal of Distance Education, 9(2), 61-70.

Project Higher Ed - Prototype of Disability Training for Faculty and Administration in Higher Education

Randall, L. (March 25, 1999). W3C proposes guidelines on Web accessibility. Newsbytes.

Real Connections: Making Distance Learning Accessible to Everyone Information and resources from DO-IT on making distance learning accessible to students with disabilities.

Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic - Taped and electronic books.

Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America - RESNA An association concerned with technology and disability.

Resmer, M. (1997). Universal access to information resources technology, Syllabus, 10(6), 12-14.

Section 508 Standards of the Access Board - Standards for assuring that electronic and information resources procured and used by the federal government are accessible to people with disabilities.

Snow Courseware Accessibility Site

Specifications for Accessible Learning Technologies (SALT), National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM)
Design guidelines to make educational technology.

Trace Research and Development Center Research, development and resource center on technology and disability.

US Department of Justice ADA Home Page General information, enforcement news, and technical assistance related to The Americans with Disabilities Act.

Vanderheiden, G.C. (1990). Thirty-something million: Should they be exceptions? Human Factors, 32(4), 383-396.

WGBH Descriptive Video Service - Resources and services that make TV and other media accessible to people with disabilities.

Waddell, C.D., & Thomason, K.L. (1998, November). Is your site ADA-compliant ... or a lawsuit-in-waiting?, The Internet Lawyer.

WAVE (Web Accessibility Versatile Evaluator) A tool to check Web pages for accessibility.

Web Accessibility Initiative, World Wide Web Consortium Guidelines for making Web pages accessible.

WebABLE A searchable directory for disability-related Internet resources.

WebAIM Resources for making accessible Web sites.

Web content accessibility guidelines. World Wide Web Consortium, Web Accessibility Initiative.

Woodbury, M. (1998). Defining Web ethics. Science and Engineering Ethics, 4, 203-212.

Materials provided with permission through DO-IT - Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology

Other Resources continued...

Online Distance Education--"Anytime, Anywhere" But Not for Everyone
Article, with linked references, by Axel Schmetzke, Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin.

Accessible Web-based Distance Education: Principles and Best PracticesWritten by Laurie Harrison ATRC, University of Toronto

Consortium for Affordable and Accessible Distance Education (CAADE) - Project Summary by Dr. Takeshi Utsumi [Affordable Integrated Education Technology for Underserved Populations in the U.S. and Around the World]

Colleges Strive to Give Disabled Students Access to On-Line Courses

Courseware Accessibility

Applying the ADA to the Internet: A Web Accessibility Standard by Cynthia D. Waddell, JD , ADA Coordinator, City of San Jose, CA USA

Captioning Resources

Captioned Media Program
Educational and general interest library of captioned videotapes, publications, and information on captioning videotapes.

Caption Center

NCAM - National Center for Accessible Media

NCAM - Motion Picture Accessibility Project

Captioned Media Program