Checking Your Online/Hybrid Course for ADA Compliance
by Jackie Luft, Ed.D, Online Accessibility Specialist
Opening your email and finding a letter of accommodation (LOA) from a student can make anyone's head spin. As instructors, we are trying to get our course online and live. Due dates are updated, we are monitoring introductory posts, adding current resources and making last minute adjustments. The beginning of the year is crazy busy. A letter from Student Disability Services (SDS) stating your documents need to be accessible or all your videos need captions may seem overwhelming.
A great idea is to make sure your course is ADA compliant before you receive an LOA. What do we look for in an ADA compliant online/hybrid course? Below is a checklist that you can use to give your course a self-check.
- Documents are formatted and saved in an accessible format.
- All images have alternative text, title and description.
- Tables include title, heading row, and does not break across pages.
- Graphs/charts have title as alt text and a long description near graph or in text body.
- PowerPoint outlines are saved as an accessible document.
- Media with only audio includes transcripts (lectures, podcasts, mp3, etc.).
- Videos have synchronized captions.
- Audio descriptions are included to describe any instructional content that is presented visually.
- Color is not used exclusively as an indicator of emphasis.
- Sufficient color contrast is provided.
- Website can be navigated with the keyboard.
- Navigation tabs are consistent on each web page.
- No use of flashing or blinking content.
- Descriptive hyperlinks are titles of websites.
- Avoid "Click Here" or URL/web address for digital documents and web pages.
If you want to learn more about each of these steps, be sure to visit our page on Accessible Instructional Material. You may also be interested in a full course evaluation from the Online Accessibility Lab. If so, you can fill out the Accessibility Evaluation Request Form.
As always please email firstname.lastname@example.org for all your online accessibility questions.
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