Ensuring Optimal Accessibility of Online Learning Resources

Ensuring Optimal Accessibility of Online Learning Resources

David Sloan (University of Dundee, Scotland), Lorna Gibson (University of Dundee, Scotland), Scott Milne (University of Dundee, Scotland) and Peter Gregor (University of Dundee, Scotland)
Copyright: © 2003 |Pages: 16
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-105-6.ch020
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Online educational resources have the potential of providing enhanced access to education for everyone. To achieve this, these resources must be accessible both to the increasingly diverse range of potential users and via the diverse browsing environments now available. Legal and moral obligations also exist to ensure that disabled people are not unjustifiably denied access to education. Established accessible design guidelines and techniques exist which, if followed, help to ensure a more usable, portable and effective learning resource for all users. However, due to a lack of awareness of these amongst educational resource providers and shortcomings in courseware authoring tools, many current online learning resources may contain significant accessibility barriers. This chapter outlines arguments for accessible design and provides a brief overview of accessible design techniques. Also discussed are strategies for ensuring accessibility of e-learning, which should include provision of appropriate support to resource providers in terms of training and guidance in accessible courseware design, as well as provision of technologies which promote creation of and access to accessible online learning resources.

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