Accessibility Basics for Faculty

Campus accessibility and technology resources

Creating course documents

  • Use headings, styles, and lists to convey your document's intended outline and structure
  • Use fonts that are easy to read: high-contrast, sufficient font-size, clear and simple design
  • For images and other non-text content, add ALT text that conveys the meaning  of the image
  • For data tables, always differentiate between header cells and data cells
  • If you use links or references, ensure that the link text clearly describes the purpose of the link
  • Export PDFs using Adobe Acrobat plug-ins from Microsoft Office; avoid "Print to PDF"

Selecting and acquiring course materials

Ask publishers about accessibility of their materials and services
Select sources or editions which are natively accessible, if possible
Use library services to acquire accessible formatted documents
Provide accessible digital copies of printed supplemental materials, such as handouts

Video and multimedia

  • Provide captions for online or classroom video resources
  • Provide transcripts for online or classroom audio-only resources
  • Present media in accessible media players when possible

Course planning

  • Understand how accessible information practices can benefit all students
  • Think about  how to address specific needs for accommodation
  • (print disabilities, auditory disabilities, motor disabilities, cognitive impairments)
  • Consider how instructional goals can be met in a variety of modes (e.g., print/web/audio)

During your course

  • Communicate with students to determine whether any accommodations are necessary; consider a statement in your ICON main page or in your syllabus
  • If students need accommodation, work with Student Disability Services to produce best outcomes for students
  • Be prepared to take rapid action to support students who need accommodations