Online Course Instruction
General Resources for Accessible Online Course Instruction
- Designing an Accessible Online Course: Tools for Promoting Disability Access and Inclusion
20 Tips for Teaching an Accessible Online Course
Questions and Consultation
For questions regarding academic support and accommodations, students and faculty can contact Student Support Services by calling 503-768-7192 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Students and faculty may also schedule an appointment online. Phone and Zoom appointments are available with SSS Staff members, if needed.
Academic Accommodations for Online Courses
- Be sure to review all Academic Accommodations Letters / Faculty Notifications that you have received this semester.
- All accommodations apply to online course delivery, just as they would for in-person delivery.
- CAS & Grad: If you would like to receive a comprehensive list of your students who have accommodations please contact email@example.com.
- Law : If you need clarification on academic accommodations, please contact Associate Dean Libby Davis (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The Zoom platform offers a variety of accessibility features (detailed on the Zoom Accessibility webpage). Zoom offers closed captioning only through third party vendors, automatic transcripts, keyboard accessibility, and screen reader support.
Zoom Accessibility Barriers
For the most part, Zoom is a very accessible product, but the following items are not accessible and should be avoided or supplemented when possible:
- If you will be annotating items, please describe verbally what is being annotated.
- Limit the use of the whiteboard feature. While this feature can be very helpful for instruction, it is not accessible for all students. Please consider alternatives such as Google Docs to accomplish the same goal.
- When sharing your screen, verbally describe what is on it; including slide numbers if a presentation.
Share a link if you are presenting a webpage or an accessible version of any files.
Google Meet Accessibility
The Google Meet platform offers a variety of accessibility features (detailed on the Hangouts Meet Accessibility webpage). Please take some time to review the accessibility features available to you and your students.
- Extended Time on Exams : Faculty will be responsible for ensuring that all students who receive extended time on exams are allowed their approved accommodations for any online, timed exam. It is very important for you to verify the extended time accommodation, located on the accommodations letter.
- Take-Home Exams : Please note that accommodations for extended time on exams may also apply to take-home exams. Please consult with Student Support Services if you have questions regarding the length of time that you permit for take-home exams.
- Alternative Text for Exams: When possible, SSS recommends that you send exams to students as Word documents. Word documents are the most accessible/readable file types for students who utilize alternative text formats. Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is the best software for ensuring accessibility. Saving a .doc as a .pdf may not ensure that document is accessible. If you need to send a .pdf document, please read more on how to create and verify .pdf accessibility.
- CAS Exam Proctoring : The SSS Testing Center is currently proctoring in-person (paper copies) of exams.
Law School : The Law School Registrar’s Office will ensure all exam accommodations are provided to students. Faculty do not need to take any steps regarding exam accommodations. If you have questions, please contact Law School Assistant Registrar Brooke Mill (email@example.com).
Graduate School for Education and Counseling : Graduate students with questions regarding exam accommodations can contact Associate Dean, Janet Bixby (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- CAS & Grad : Students who have been receiving notes as an accommodation will continue to receive notes for online lectures. Eileen Dowty, SSS Associate Director, will be reaching out to faculty directly regarding online course instruction and note taking. We appreciate your assistance in supporting our students through our note taking process.
- Law : Notetakers will take notes during remote class sessions and notes will be delivered to accommodated students per the usual process.
Flexibility within reason on Assignments & Attendance
- Be sure to complete and/or revisit Flexibility Agreement Forms with your students who have flexibility accommodations. Agreements may need to be updated to reflect new expectations of online course delivery.
Accessible Text & Other Documents
- All electronic reading materials must be accessible for all students in your course.
- Recommended Formats: When possible, SSS recommends that you send exams to students as a Word document. Word documents are the most accessible/readable file types for students who utilize alternative text formats. Adobe Acrobat Pro DC is the best software for ensuring accessibility. Saving a .doc as a .pdf may not ensure that document is accessible. If you need to send a .pdf document, please read more on how to create and verify .pdf accessibility.
- PowerPoints & Word Documents: To learn more about creating accessible PowerPoints and Word Documents please review this Accessibility Evaluation Checklist.
- Google Docs & Google Slides: To learn more about creating accessible Google Docs and Google Slides review this Google Help Guide.
All videos should be captioned. Below are guides for adding subtitles to different video formats:
- Subtitle files may be created using any text editor and should be saved in SRT format. You can find a guide here for creating subtitle files as well as a rundown for the format.
Google Drive provides instructions on how to add your own subtitles and closed captions. You may also consult this video walking through the process of adding subtitles to videos in Google Drive. Subtitle files (*.srt files)
YouTube videos: You can turn on subtitles by clicking the CC icon at the bottom of a YouTube video. A red line will appear under the icon when closed captions have been enabled. To turn on subtitles for all videos you play from YouTube, visit your account settings and click “Playback and performance” and then check “Always show captions.” Click save.
Faculty Notifications - Student Illness or Personal Emergency
CAS: Students who miss more than three days of online class, due to illness or personal emergency, can contact Student Support Services (SSS) to request a Faculty Notification be sent to their instructors and advisor(s) notifying them of their current situation. Students may contact SSS by emailing email@example.com or calling 503-768-7192. It is important to recognize that students have the option to request that SSS send a Faculty Notification, this is not a requirement. Students will be encouraged to communicate with their faculty directly, regardless of whether a Faculty Notification is sent or not.
Law School: Students who miss more than three days of online class, due to illness or personal emergency, can contact Associate Dean Libby Davis (firstname.lastname@example.org) to request an attendance accommodation.
Graduate School for Education and Counseling: Students who miss more than three days of online class, due to illness or personal emergency, can contact Associate Dean, Janet Bixby (email@example.com) to request an attendance accommodation.
If students experience symptoms related to COVID-19 for longer than two weeks and need to pursue health related Interim Accommodations (i.e. notetakers, flexibility), students should contact Student Support Services to Schedule an Initial Appointment.