Welcome to Learning Technologies at Emporia State University. We are tasked with supporting educational technologies for faculty, staff, and students. Some of our services
The term accessibility is often used as the "ability to access" the functionality and environment by as many people as possible. It typically focuses on people with
disabilities and their ability to access through a modified environment or with the use of assistive technology. Modifications are often seen in our physical space in a facility in the form of wheelchair ramps, elevators, wider doors and bathroom stalls, and alarm systems that can be seen and heard. Accessibility as used in this course also means we are in compliance with Federal accessibility standards and guidelines as defined in various laws.
Accessibility not only applies to facilities and buildings but also applies to
Making digital content accessible means meeting a standard such that assistive technologies can function effectively. Accessible content not only benefits those with disabilities but it can be useful to other users too. For example, a captioned video or an attached transcript would be necessary for a student with an auditory disability. However, it would also benefit an ESL (English as a Second Language) student, a student in the library (who forgot their earbuds), and a student with a different learning style (e.g. someone prefers to read instead of view a video).
The term Universal Design (UD) refers to the idea of creating products and environments whose features are as usable as possible to the widest variety of people as possible, regardless of their age, ability or status. A group of professionals (e.g. architects, product designers, engineers) originally developed seven principles that are associated with UD.
These principles are extended into the classroom and in the online learning environment and often referred to as Universal Design for Learning (UDL). UDL is a set of principles for curriculum development to serve all learners, regardless of ability, disability, age, gender or cultural and linguistic background.
These same principles can be carried over to the web or online environment. Many of these universal principles can be applied using the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) standard. Most colleges have selected to comply with WCAG 2.0 AA standard. Emporia State has elected to meet this same standard.
SECTION 508 REFRESH
The United States Access Board (Links to an external site.) has issued final rule-making that updates accessibility requirements for information and communication technology (ICT) in the federal sector covered by Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 on Jan. 18, 2017. This rule also updates the guidelines for telecommunications equipment subject to Section 255 of the Communications Act. The rule jointly updates and reorganizes the Section 508 standards and Section 255 guidelines in response to market trends and innovations, such as the convergence of technologies. The refresh also harmonizes these requirements with other guidelines and standards both in the U.S. and abroad, including standards issued by the European Commission and with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), a globally recognized voluntary consensus standard for web content and ICT created by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). The rule references Level A and Level AA Success Criteria and Conformance Requirements in WCAG 2.0 and applies them to websites, electronic documents
Our team has