April 17-18 2019
Vancouver, BC
SFU Harbour Centre Campus 515 W Hastings St

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Wednesday, April 17 • 10:50am - 11:15am
Moving Beyond a Checklist Approach to Accessibility in OER Design

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In this session, I aim to:
1. Broaden peoples' perspective on accessibility and what inaccessibility can look like for different people in different contexts.
2. Empower people to be able to create OER with accessibility and inclusive design in mind from the beginning, and not as a retrofit.
3. Argue the importance of moving away from seeing accessibility as a pass/fail and instead see accessibility as an ongoing process that can always be improved.

In open education, we constantly talk about access and inclusion. These values inspire and guide our work. But despite our best intentions, we often fall short. The current checklist approach to accessibility is a helpful starting point to people new to web accessibility, but there are a lot of considerations that get left out in that approach.

In this presentation, I offer a way to think more critically about digital and print accessibility, especially as it relates to the design of open textbooks and open educational resources. I will highlight tenants of digital accessibility and accessibility checklists used in open education, such as the BCcampus Accessibility Checklist. From there, I will provide examples of how checklists fall short and how students can experience real barriers to access even if they don't have a traditional disability. For example, people who don't have the computer literacy to be able to comfortably navigate an online resource will have problems learning from a textbook that is only available online.

In addition, the current checklist approach to accessibility encourages us to see accessibility as a pass/fail, or as something that we can fix later. But if we can change our perspective and allow accessibility to influence our design decisions from the beginning of the process and continue to have it guide us all of the way through, the final OER that we produce will be a more effective learning resource.

This presentation will include an opportunity to incorporate feedback and discussion from attendees.

avatar for Josie Gray

Josie Gray

Manager, Production and Publishing, bccampus
Josie is the manager of production and publishing at BCcampus. She manages the B.C. Open Collection and provides training and support for B.C. faculty publishing open textbooks in Pressbooks. Josie has been learning about and teaching accessibility best practices in OER for six years... Read More →

Wednesday April 17, 2019 10:50am - 11:15am PDT
Room 1410