Anyone involved with developing a web site or teaching online must be aware of the issues involved with creating an accessible environment. It is critical for those of us in the community college to be able to provide a positive learning environment for all users. Below are some links to organizations that can assist in universal design and web accessibility.
Web Accessibility Resources - Portland Community College
The National Center on Disability and Access to Education (NCDAE) monitors and promotes electronically-mediated distance education policies and practices that enhance the lives of people with disabilities and their families.
Great Lakes ADA and IT Accessibility Center - This Center is sponsored by the University of Illinois - Chicago and provides a host of resources and training in the area of ADA and universal design. They also have an audio conference series that provides continuing education on regulations and trends under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
National Center on Accessible Information in Technology - This website is from the University of Washington and features the AccessIT Knowldege Base, a searchable, growing database of questions and answers regarding accessible E&IT. It is designed for educators, policy makers, librarians, technical support staff, and students and employees with disabilities and their advocates.
Background - Early in 2017, the United States Access Board published a final rule updating requirements for information and communication technology that is covered in Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Those requirements went into effect on January 18, 2018. The original intent of Section 508 deals with accessibility at the federal level. However, because public institutions of higher education receive some form of federal funding, it is widely accepted that these requirements should be acknowledged and addressed by colleges and universities.
Accessibility Community of Practice - Anyone tasked with, or involved in, the accessibility of Michigan community colleges' web presence meet to share best practices with accessibility in higher education. To join please send a request to Carl Weckerle at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To assist with the sharing of knowledge, MCO has set up a listserv for the Accessibility Community of Practice. To join, please send a request to Carl Weckerle (email@example.com).