[Athen] obligation to provide alt format for research/thesis work

Roll,Marla mcroll at CAHS.Colostate.edu
Tue Oct 6 11:21:33 PDT 2009

Hello all,

A colleague from our library contacted me to solicit thoughts on our satellite university's obligation to provide all books potentially used to write a master's thesis in a digital format due to a disability. To summarize the situation. The librarian at this other campus is working with an undergraduate student that intends to apply for graduate school. She has been successfully acquired OCR capable journal articles and scanning articles for the student. She is trying to determine what reasonable accommodations are for books. If she has a book in print is she required to scan the book or purchase an electronic/Braille copy of the book? What if she borrows the book from another library (interlibrary loan). Can she legally scan an entire book that the library owns or another library owns and give the student the electronic file? Is it reasonable to expect a library to purchase an electronic/Braille copy of a book or scan any book that the student might need in the course of their research?

Can you all provide me input that I can share with this librarian? How are other campuses handling alt format for books and resources used in the research process? Students do not buy them so what is the obligation on the part of the library?

Thanks much,

Marla Roll

Marla C. Roll, MS, OTR
Director, Assistive Technology Resource Center
Assistant Professor, Occupational Therapy
304 Occupational Therapy Building
Fort Collins, CO 80523
mcroll at cahs.colostate.edu

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