Accessibility and inclusion should be at the forefront of every higher education leader’s strategic goals. Today marks Global Accessibility Awareness Day. Verbit is highly committed to spreading awareness about the importance of accessibility for today’s students.

Access can truly make or break the student experience. All students should be given equal opportunities to succeed and participate in the online and offline campus experience. Whether it’s making one course material, a full course itself or an entire college within the university more accessible, many higher education professionals are committing themselves to this critical initiative. It’s inspiring.

Celebrating Accessibility Leaders

To spotlight select individuals who are creating more opportunities for a variety of higher education students to succeed, Verbit has gathered videos to showcase the perspectives of higher-ed thought leaders who we are fortunate to work with. We admire these leaders who are making waves in the realms of accessibility and inclusion as they pertain to students.

The participants represent leading institutions, including FIT, Virginia Tech, George Mason University, University of Kentucky, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, CSU Chico and more. Video platform experts who are helping schools provide more accessible video and materials also participated from YuJa and Mediasite. Watch their videos here to see what Global Accessibility Awareness Day means to them.

eBook with Actionable Insights

Accessibility was also a core focal point of Verbit’s recent EduALL virtual conference. The event made it clear that the higher-ed industry is at a turning point. Accessibility and inclusion are no longer being looked at as initiatives to implement as after thoughts or based on individual student requests. A great deal of the time students are not even reporting their disabilities or elucidating their needs to their professors.

As a result, higher-ed institutions are proactively turning to technology and video to meet industry demands, ADA guidelines and student expectations, as well as commit themselves to ensuring all aspects of the student experience are accessible, inclusive and engaging.

We’ve created an eBook with key points, initiatives and takeaways from the event to serve as a guide for the higher education industry as university leaders, professors, disability directors, instructional designers and other faculty search for opportunities to learn how to make their courses and campuses more accessible. Read it here.

Begin Committing to Accessibility

Universities, eLearning providers and corporations can easily begin by implementing small accessibility measures. Professionals shouldn’t feel the need to jump in headfirst, but can take small steps to ensure their students, learners and employees are provided with more equal opportunities going forward. You can begin by adding captions to all new videos posted on YouTube and LMS platforms. Then, you could go back to past materials and begin adding captions to materials which are likely to be reused in the future.

Higher-ed professionals can also look to provide students and content consumers with better note taking abilities. One measure to account for these note taking needs is to grant access to searchable transcripts of lectures and videos. These transcripts can help to provide students with an interactive tool to retain the course information and reference it easily later when studying. They can be especially helpful for those learning online, as well as live in the classroom itself.

For more information on how to get started with accessibility, feel free to contact us.