Instructional & STEM Materials Accessibility

Quality design of instructional materials enables the diversity of learners to perceive, contribute, understand, navigate, and interact with electronic and online content. Visit the User Experience page to learn about some of the barriers students with disabilities experience in the online environment. While faculty have academic freedom over content of the course and method of teaching, accessibility is about equal and effective access to the course.  

Tips for Accessible Instructional and STEM Materials 

The tips below are meant to increase the usability and accessibility within instructional environments.  

Accessible Course Syllabus Template

Utilize eLearning’s syllabus template (https://elearning.cpp.edu/course-design-academy/) that is compliant with all Cal Poly Pomona syllabus policies, is electronically accessible (i.e., compliant with rules regarding learners with disabilities), and is an example of a learner-centered course. 

Navigation of Online Materials

Usability considerations when choosing technology to use in curriculum can be found on the CSU ATI Professional Development page (http://teachingcommons.cdl.edu/access/faculty/nav_online_materials.shtml).

Alternate Text for Images

Alternative text is a written description of what an image is to aid those who are visually impaired or use a screen reader. Image Alt Text presents a clear and effective summary, how-to, and reference to WCAG for creation of alternate text for basic and complex images. Source: Accessibility at Penn State (http://accessibility.psu.edu/images/alttext/ )

Creation of Accessible Layout Tables and Data Tables

Row and column headers on tables enable screen reader users to understand the visual association of data sighted users see. WebAim describes how to mark up the tables to be accessible. For Layout Tables, visit https://webaim.org/techniques/tables/. For Data Tables, visit https://webaim.org/techniques/tables/data.

Creation of Accessible Mathematic Equations

ATI's Creation of Accessible Mathematic Equations webpage provides more information, tools, and how-to's about MathML and LaTeX.

CSU STEM Guides, Tutorials and Best Practices

This CSU ATI Professional Development provides guides, tutorials, and best practices for accessibility in STEM. The page can be found at http://teachingcommons.cdl.edu/access/docs_multi/docs_stem.shtml.

Course Design Resources  

eLearning has great resources for course design (https://elearning.cpp.edu/course-design-academy/) and tools and technology (https://www.cpp.edu/~facultycenter/learning-technologies/) that includes information about Universal Design for Learning, BlackBoard and use of other technologies.

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