[Athen] Free Webinar: Online Higher Education & Accessibility

Gaeir Dietrich gdietrich at htctu.net
Wed Apr 4 22:18:07 PDT 2012

On Tuesday April 10th 2-3:30p.m. ET Eduventure will hold the first in our
two-part webinar session "Online Higher Education & Accessibility."

About the Roundtable:

Online higher education is always associated with access, but what happens
when online delivery itself is a barrier? In May 2011, the U.S. Department
of Education released additional guidance on the applicability of a prior
"Dear Colleague" letter concerning accessibility and new technology in K-12
and postsecondary education. The "Dear Colleague" responded to successful
complaints, brought by the National Federation for the Blind (NFB) and
others, against a number of universities and other education organizations
relating to either inaccessibility of specific devices, such as e-readers,
or inaccessibility across a host of technologies. The May 2011 guidance
emphasized that online courses and programs, and associated online services,
must be accessible to students, faculty and staff with disabilities,
consistent with the Americans With Disabilities Act (1990). This also
applies to pilot programs used to evaluate a new tool or technology, and to
schools and programs that currently do not enroll any disabled students.

This guidance appeared amid a host of other federal regulation pertaining to
online delivery, such as state authorization, the credit hour rule and
Gainful Employment under the "Program Integrity" banner. Many schools were
taken up with these developments, and may have missed the full implications
of the accessibility guidance. A late 2010 survey from WCET found that at
many schools online learning is decentralized to the point that the average
institution may be vulnerable to legal challenge around accessibility.

As the online higher education market grows more competitive, and various
vendors and technologies tout alleged pedagogical and experiential
enhancements, schools are looking for ways to stand out and improve
educational value. As schools seek to make online delivery more interactive
and media-rich, accessibility may be the unwitting victim. It is not clear
that schools are adequately taking into account accessibility requirements,
nor that in such a fast-moving space "good practice" is straightforward or

Our Panelists:

Webcast - Part I: Understanding the Law - Online Higher Education and

Tuesday, April 10, 2-3:30 pm ET

* Alex Cohen - PhD candidate at the LeBow College of Business at
Drexel University, Graduate of the online Master of Science in Hospitality
Management Program at Drexel University
* Daniel F. Goldstein - Brown, Goldstein & Levy, LLP
* Kelly Hermann - Director, Office of College-wide Disability
Services, Empire State College, SUNY
* Mark A. Riccobono - Executive Director, Jernigan Institute, National
Federation of the Blind
* Howard A. Rosenblum - CEO, National Association of the Deaf

To register for this Roundtable, please click here
<http://www2.eduventures.com/e/11652/-11652-2012-03-23-tvld/wtxv/35967035> .

Richard Garrett

Vice President & Principal Analyst

Continuing & Professional Education Learning Collaborative

Online Higher Education Learning Collaborative

Eduventures, Inc.

101 Federal Street, 12th Floor

Boston MA 02110

Tel: 617-532-6081


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