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Postsecondary Accessible Technology Programs: From Reactive to Proactive. Presenters: Cheryl Pruitt, California State University and Bill Welsh, Rutgers University. Group discussion:. In regards to accessible technology and information, what are your institution’s: Greatest Challenges?
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Postsecondary Accessible Technology Programs: From Reactive to Proactive Presenters: Cheryl Pruitt, California State University and Bill Welsh, Rutgers University
Group discussion: In regards to accessible technology and information, what are your institution’s: • Greatest Challenges? • Greatest Successes? • Strategies for moving forward? • What do you want to take away from this session?
Bill Welsh • Executive Director, the Office for Disability ServicesRutgers University, New Brunswick, N.J. (April 2013-Present) • Director, the Office for Disability ServicesPenn State University (1999 – April, 2013) • Former member co-chair, Penn State’s Accessible Technology & Information (ATI) committee (2011-2013). • Access4All, LLC Consultingowner and consultant • 20 years working in disability services in higher education • Provides trainings, seminars, webinars and consultation on accessibility and usability; transition to college; and disability services on a local, state-wide and national level.
Cheryl Pruitt • Director, Accessible Technology Initiative (ATI), California State University System (CSU) (2011 – present) • Special Consultant to ATI, California State University System (CSU) (2009-2010) • Part-time Faculty, Computer Engineering and Computer Science Dept., CSU Long Beach (2001-2008) • Cheryl oversees the ATI implementation across the CSU 23 campus system. She has been involved with the ATI since the beginning in 2007, first at the campus level, then at the systemwide level. The CSU system has made significant progress towards implementing ATI process improvement in the areas of web accessibility, accessible procurement, and accessible instructional materials.
Session Goals • Share insights into strategies that have worked at other institutions (No need to reinvent the wheel). • Share information and templates on policies, organization, effective resources and tools, and assessment that could be replicated. • Overall Goal: Provide participants with a road map to create a cultural change from reactivity to proactivity!
The Impact of the ADA • In 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed. • Prior to the law being enforced, this was the norm.
Moving your institution towards accessibility… Cultural change + Institution-wide effort = Really BIG Job CSU Accessibility Implementation Tools and Resources
RATE Your College: The Rating Game! A fun way to develop a plan: • Step 1: Rank your college. • Step 2: Assess your college’s commitment. • Step 3: Train your personnel. • Step 4: Evaluate often. Game Rules: For every question you answer YES, give your institution 1 point. For every answer that is a NO, or I’m not sure. Give your institution a 0 for that question. There are 35 total points possible.
Policy (Total 6 Points): • Our administration is supportive of accessible technology and information? • We have a policy on Web Accessibility? • We have a policy or standards for accessible on-line courses? • We have a policy for captioned videos? • We have a policy on accessible course materials? • We have a policy on procurement of accessible technology?
How to Get Administrators to care about accessibility Technology lawsuits • Textbooks • Web content • Classroom technology • Course management system, assignments, live chat, discussion boards, videos with captions, quizzes • Library resources • Banking services, registration services • Applications, email, calendars, etc. • TEACH Act • Accessible technology may also mean usable by most • It’s the right thing to do!
General Comments • Too much emphasis on the law • Need more emphasis on usability and design for everyone • Knowledge is very Powerful! • Being proactive increases revenue and provides access for people from many groups • Vision for the future: Proactive design for everyone rather than accommodations
Organizational (Total 5 Points): • We have an accessible technology team or group? • Our web developers have regular meetings and trainings? • We have someone or personnel responsible for accessible technology? • We have a yearly plan for training Faculty/Staff/Students on accessible technology? • We have a web site dedicated to accessible technology and information?
Practice Groups • Practice group: a group of people who share an interest ...in a particular domain or area. It is through the process of sharing information and experiences with the group that the members learn from each other, and have an opportunity to develop themselves personally and professionally (Lave & Wenger 1991). • Knowledge and understanding is key to success of any organization for a cultural shift to occur.
CSU Shared Governance • A shared governance strategy led to an overall approach that empowers the CSU faculty and staff to take ownership of their campus’ accessibility strategy. • Systemwide • Executive Sponsors Steering Committee that actively shapes the ATI strategy and projects • Communities of Practice that bring together stakeholders from Procurement, Instructional Materials, and Web Accessibility • All of these groups meet monthly • Campus • ATI Steering Committee comprised of representatives from Campus Administration (Presidents, Provosts, CIO’s), Academic and Faculty Senate, Centers for Faculty Development, and ADA Compliance Officer) • Sub Committees that include the implementation personnel on campus • These groups meet at least 2 times per year. They update the campus ATI plan and monitor the progress throughout the year. • An overall continuous process improvement approach gives each campus the flexibility and support to manage their ATI implementation.
CSU Accessible Technology Network (CSUATN) • Established to leverage the accessibility expertise across the CSU system. • Includes members from 6 CSU campuses, the CO ATI Staff, and also contracts with experts like Lucy who are outside our system. • Provides shared accessibility evaluation services to the CSU system by reviewing IT products that are used systemwide and also does accessibility reviews for outside entities
CSU Accessibility – Organizational Change • Discovery • Defining the problem • Creating a plan that defines processes that produce organizational change • Implementation • Establishing business procedures that institutionalize the process • Continuous business process improvement • Assessment • Measuring progress • Assessing effectiveness of process/procedures • Refinement • Revising processes/procedures based on lessons learned
Accessibility – An Iterative Process • Discovery • Refinement • Implementation • Assessment
Resources and Tools (Total 8 Points): • We provide regular trainings for instructional designers on accessibility? • Faculty? • Staff? • Administrators? • We send our IT staff to accessibility trainings and conferences? • ODS Staff? • Administrators? • We have online training resources for accessible technology?
First Year Plan at Penn State • Conduct central audits report results back to ATI committee. • Conduct scans on main blockers for screen readers: Blocker Training Materials . KISS • Trained web liaisons on using JAWS and other screen readers. Started using human checks. • Focus training on using validation tool (HiSoftware’s Compliance Sheriff). • Work with Web Liaisons on conducting scans and remediating Web sites for NFB and WCAG 2.0. Used social media and meetings. • Assess remediation efforts through reports from Web Liaisons.
Second Year Plan: Build Infrastructure • PSU built an accessible technology and information infrastructure within ITS. • Several new positions created • Reorganization of current positions to have a key role within ITS infrastructure and university structure. • ITS developed 5 year strategic plan, accessibility is key part of the plan.
Proposed First Year Plan at Rutgers Timeline Goals and Tasks Various university departments met to discuss plans for developing web accessibility and online course accessibility. Web accessibility policy to be finalized Online course accessibility to be finalized First meeting of online accessibility group Participation with ITAG groups University-wide accessible technology group to be formed. Begin formation of practice groups -faculty and students University-wide accessibility tool implemented Training sessions to be developed and piloted • Fall 2013 • Spring 2014 • Summer 2014 • Fall 2014
Future Goals and Plans at Rutgers: • Creating lynda.com-like training videos for F/S/S. Focus first year on easy checks from W3C: http://www.w3.org/WAI/eval/preliminary • Create a model online course and obtain buy-in to have it required. r Offer to faculty or staff as a certificate program possibly through Human Resources as well. Get faculty involved. • Meet with units one-on-one to assist in implementation plans, reports, and assessment. • University-wide trainings, webinars and conferences to assist in developing knowledge base. Continue training plan throughout the year. • Look at infrastructure of IT and other departments and where resources can be shared to assist in efforts. Utilize student organizations and interns. • Focus on purchasing policies and vendor relations.
Planning and Assessment (Total 6 points): • We assess our web sites for accessibility regularly? • We have a plan to accomplish web accessibility? • We asses our library materials, databases, and search engines for accessibility? • We have a plan for how to accomplish library accessibility? • We assess our procurement practices to include accessibility? • We have a plan to integrate accessibility into our procurement process?
CSU ATI Framework CSU ATI Framework Strategies/Goals & Success Indicators/Priorities Continuous Process Improvement with Strong Executive Support Do a Self- Assessment Make a Campus Plan Work the Campus Plan
PSU Assessment • Create and conduct a survey of all visually impaired F/S/S regarding technology, information and systems related to accessibility. • Reports from Web liaisons on their respective budget units go to the Provost and their budget executives ( healthy competition). • Assess remediation efforts through reports from Web Liaisons. • Use evaluations from trainings to determine effectiveness and future training modules.
PSU Assessments • Yearly progress reports • Reports of training sessions, attendance, what departments attended and evaluations at each event. • Reports from units • Feedback and collaboration using Yammer, social media site. • Purchasing is working with ITS to vet all technology purchases for accessibility.
CSU Assessment • Campus Annual Reporting process • Each campus submits a report for each priority area • Web • Procurement • Instructional Materials • Report includes all goals & success indicators for each priority area • Progress in measured by status levels • Systemwide Aggregate Report • Reporting results from each campus are aggregated into one report • We can monitor progress and make a plan based on the report data
Web Accessibility Self-Assessment: Example • Web Accessibility Evaluation Process Area ( 7 goals and 69 Success Indicators) • Goal 1.0 Identify and repair or replace inaccessible websites, web applications, and digital content.
Who To Involve? Form a committee! Develop Practice groups! Obtain buy-in from: • IT staff/Web developers/Instructional Designers • Disability Services Staff • IT Administrators • Academic Administrators • Faculty and Faculty Senate • Online Course Administrators • Procurement Management • Training Services
Road Map to Success • Obtain Buy-in from administrators. • Create practice groups for oversight charged by administration. • Assess current initiatives and resources. • Benchmark with similar institutions and share with administrators. • Develop policies and procedures. • Develop strategic plans. • Determine responsible parties or units. • Develop strategies for assessing progress. • Report progress publicly and to administrators.
Final Thoughts-Bill • Assessments of current baselines for web accessibility are critical, and then establish obtainable, reasonable, measurable goals and timelines. Start with initiatives that are already established or go for the low hanging fruits. KISS • Develop an institution-wide practice groups with representation from all departments and colleges. From this group, other smaller practice groups can be formed that tap into knowledge base of current employees and faculty. What are the areas of expertise. Who are your champions? Provide incentives.
Final Thoughts • Develop a university-wide strategic plan, policies, and initiatives with realistic goals and timelines and obtain buy in from highest levels • Plan Implement Measure progress • Integrate accessibility into your business processes • Develop resources, tools, trainings, workshops and best practices to train faculty, staff and students on how to make technology and information accessible. • Knowledge allows change to happen!