October Disability Awareness- What can I do about accessibility?

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. During the month, the Accessibility Working Group, which focuses on digital accessibility initiatives, will be sending out weekly messages to promote awareness. 

Did you know:

Amazon, Apple, Comcast, Facebook, Google, Netflix and Spotify all have launched accessibility initiatives with assistive features and tools. 

What can I do about accessibility?

Recognize disability as a critical aspect of diversity in which the environment poses more of a disability barrier (physical design, access of materials, attitudes/biases, etc.) than the individual disability itself and be part of the solution.

Begin small! Start learning accessibility basics and commit to implementing them over time in the content you create and use to ensure its usability by individuals with disabilities.

  1. Ensure video and audio content have text-based alternatives for those with sensory impairments so all users can access the information. This includes captioningvideos or providing audio transcripts
  2. Make hyperlinks concise, descriptive, and meaningful out of context for ease of use and navigation. (Do: There are several things to consider in creating accessible link text. Don’t: Learn more. Click here)
  3. Apply paragraph styles or heading tags in documents. Structure is critical for adaptive technology users who rely on properly formatted headings to navigate documents and web pages.
  4. Providealternate text to describe images that convey meaning in websites, documents, and presentations so people using screen-readers can understand the information contained in the image.
  5. Utilize the most readable fonts and a strong color contrast between background and foreground so users can access the content in bright sunlight or high-contrast mode, and increasing legibility. 

What is Appalachian State doing?

Appalachian State University has an Accessibility Working Group, composed of representatives from various departments across the campus, that works to support and promote accessibility knowledge, resources, and adoption across campus. The Office of Disability Resources provides training and resources for faculty, staff, and administration around accessibility for individuals with disabilities.

What can you do?

“The disability is not the problem. The accessibility is the problem.”  --Mohamed Jemni, Deaf and professor of ICT and Educational Technologies at the University of Tunis, Tunisia

Published: Oct 26, 2020 9:55am