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Universal Design for Learning: Creating Accessible Documents. March 12, 2013. Introductions. Allison Kidd IT Coordinator UDL / Accessibility Trainer Shannon Lavey , MS, OTR Service Coordinator Assistive Technology Trainer Assistive Technology Resource Center

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  • Allison Kidd
    • IT Coordinator
    • UDL / Accessibility Trainer
  • Shannon Lavey, MS, OTR
    • Service Coordinator
    • Assistive Technology Trainer
  • Assistive Technology Resource Center
    • Provide Assistive Technology for students with disabilities
    • Provide support for faculty and staff at CSU on accessibility
    • http://atrc.colostate.edu
  • CSU’s Accessibility Guidelines
  • Principles of Universal Design for Learning
  • 2 Main Concepts for All Documents
    • Structure
    • Alternative Text
  • Hands-On: Word Documents
  • Hands-On: PDF Documents
csu s guidelines for accessibility of electronic and information technology
CSU’s Guidelines for Accessibility of Electronic and Information Technology

Adopted by Faculty Council, Fall 2012

  • CSU is committed to providing equal access to electronic information for all students
  • Universal Design for Learning provides a strategy for preparing materials that overcome barriers to learning and benefit all learners
universal design for learning
Universal Design for Learning

Universal Design for Learning (UDL)is a set of principles for designing materials that give all individuals equal opportunities to learn.

Source: http://www.cast.org/udl/index.html

today s students are diverse
Today’s Students Are Diverse
  • Ethnicity & Culture
  • Native language
  • Non-Traditional
  • Learning Styles
  • Disabilities – Non-Apparent
    • Dyslexia
    • Learning Disability
    • ADHD
    • Brain Injury
  • Disabilities – Apparent
    • Visual Impairment
    • Hearing Impairment
    • Physical Disability
udl a framework for inclusive pedagogy
UDL: A Framework for Inclusive Pedagogy
  • Information and concepts are represented in multiple ways and in a variety of formats.
  • Students are given multiple ways to expresstheir comprehension and mastery of a topic.
  • Students engage with new ideas and information in multiple ways.
learning styles involve the senses
Learning Styles: Involve the Senses
  • Visual
  • Auditory
  • Kinesthetic
  • Combine for highest impact on learning!
what makes a document universally designed
What Makes a Document Universally Designed?
  • Search-ability
  • Select-ability for Copy and Paste
  • Consistent Structure / Organization
  • Bookmarks or an Interactive TOC
  • Text to Speech capability
  • Accessibility for Screen Reading Software
beyond accessibility
Beyond Accessibility

Universal Design Features


Select-ability for Copy and Paste

Consistent Structure / Organization

Bookmarks or an Interactive TOC

Text to Speech capability

Accessibility for Screen Readers

How Can Students Benefit?

English Language Learners

Non-Traditional Students

Learning Styles

Disabilities – Apparent

Disabilities – Non-Apparent

diverse technology diverse formats
Diverse Technology, Diverse Formats
  • Students are using a wide variety of technology
    • Operating Systems
    • Devices – tablets, phones, eReaders
    • Versions of word processing software
    • Assistive Technology – hardware and software
  • Let students pick the format that works best for them – offer multiple formats.
    • Start with Word
    • Convert to PDF
    • Make both files available to students
creating udl documents two main concepts
Creating UDL Documents:Two Main Concepts
  • Document Structure
    • Headings
    • Table of Contents
    • Content Reading Order
  • Descriptive Alternate Text
    • Images
    • Graphs
    • Tables
document structure
Document Structure
  • Content should be organized!
  • Use built-in styles
    • Headings
    • Lists
    • Emphasis
  • Be consistent with styles
    • Top level headings – use styles to designate level of importance
    • Screenreaders can pull up all headings as a list
why is structure important
Why is Structure Important?
  • Visually - It looks easier to read
  • Easier to pick out important points
  • Students can take notes based on an obvious outline.
  • Provides a Table of Contents
  • Screen-reading software uses structure to navigate the document more easily
  • Consistent use of headings lets the listener know how important a section is.
what is alternate text
What is Alternate Text?
  • Screen readers can only read text
  • Present the information in more than one way
    • Provide a short text description for all non-text elements
  • Alt Text describes the purpose or meaning of the image
how to write alt text
How to Write Alt Text

“What is the function of this image?”

context is key
Context is Key
  • Alternative text for images should describe the meaning of the image in its context
    • Ice Cream Manufacturer
    • Girl Scouts of America
    • A Food Blog
    • Diversity Website

Adapted from Jesse Hausler, The ACCESS Project

office 2010 compatibility mode off
Office 2010: Compatibility Mode Off
  • Documents with .doc will open in compatibility mode
  • More accessibility features are available in .docx format
  • To turn compatibility mode off:
  • File > Save As > File Type >

Word Document (*.docx)

add structure use styles
Add Structure: Use Styles
  • Add Headings for each section
  • Be Consistent
  • Use Tables to organize columns
add alt text to images
Add Alt Text to Images
  • Right-click on the image and select ‘Format Picture’
  • Select the ‘Alt Text’ option at the bottom
  • Type the alt text in the ‘Description’ box on the right
  • Do not use the ‘Title’ field, as a screenreader will not read it!
add header row to tables
Add Header Row to Tables
  • Right-click on the top row of the table.
  • Click on ‘Table Properties’
  • Check the box ‘Repeat as header row at the top of each page’
add alt text to tables
Add Alt Text to Tables
  • Right-click on the table and select ‘Table Properties’
  • Select the ‘Alt Text’ tab on the right
  • Type the alt text in the ‘Description’ box on the right
  • Ignore the ‘Title’ field, as screenreaders won’t read it (same as with images).
microsoft s accessibility checker
Microsoft’s Accessibility Checker
  • Use the Built-in Accessibility Checker
    • File > Info > Check for Issues > Check Accessibility

Hands-On: PDF Documents

Scanned to PDF

Word to PDF

let s look at scanned pdfs
Let’s Look at Scanned PDFs

There are three types of PDFs resulting from a scanner:

  • Scanned PDF saved as image only
  • Scanned PDF with Optical Character Recognition
  • Scanned PDF with OCR and Tags added

Scanned PDF Results





Text to Speech

Scanned PDF

Scanned PDF with OCR

OCR and Tags

morgan library course reserves
Morgan Library Course Reserves
  • Login with eid to request PDF creation
  • Library staff will do entire process
    • Find the article
    • Scan with OCR
    • Convert existing scanned PDF
    • Post online for your course
    • Turn-around time – typically one day
word to pdf conversion
Word to PDF Conversion
  • Start out with a Word Document
  • Make the Word Doc accessible, then convert it
  • Use Save As PDF
  • Or use the Acrobat Toolbar





Text to Speech

Print to PDF

Save As PDF

Adobe PDF Plugin

hands on pdf
Hands-On PDF
  • Before Conversion!
  • Make sure Tagged PDF is enabled in Preferences under the Word PDF Toolbar
  • This makes the PDF accessible to screen readers!
in adobe acrobat x
In Adobe Acrobat X

Open the Accessibility Toolbar

Click on ‘TouchUp Reading Order’

touching up the reading order
Touching Up the Reading Order
  • Click on ‘Show Order Panel’
  • The pane will show up at the left
  • Drag and drop items in the correct order
  • Empty items or decorative images – set as ‘Background’.
further resources
Further Resources:
  • CSU’s Accessibility Website
    • http://www.accessibility.colostate.edu
  • CSU’s Access Project Tutorials
    • http://accessproject.colostate.edu/udl
  • [email protected]