[Athen] More questions

John Elmer JElmer at vcccd.edu
Tue Jul 30 17:15:21 PDT 2013

Also............ our Math Dept dropped ALEKS. Bless them.

From: athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu [mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of John Elmer
Sent: Tuesday, July 30, 2013 4:57 PM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network
Subject: RE: [Athen] More questions

Our math faculty worked extensively with Pearson and was, I believe, a force behind the changes that they have made in MyMathLab. So.... pressure from those who select textbooks seems to work.... Especially if they are persistent, and just a tad annoying in a non-alienating sort of way.

But, this was for F2F classes. I believe that you cannot use inaccessible products in online courses, period.

For our F2F classes, we, obviously had to provide accommodations to make the materials accessible, which meant having someone there to assist, including, sometimes, an interpreter. We also convinced the math people to offer at least one MyMathLab-free section of each class using it. So, I guess what I am saying is: hit 'em where it hurts in a capitalist system.... in the bottom line. If we all banded together nationwide, things would change yesterday, but who is going to organize something like that?

It is always good to distribute information like the Louisiana decision broadly to the powers that be. We do that.

Keep in mind that it was not just the online tool that was cited in the Louisiana decision. They also failed to provide other class materials in a timely manner and in an effective and equitable accessible format. So, the school failed to do what they could and should have done as well.

We "access folks" have tons of responsibility and little authority. This kind of cr#p is going to continue to show up in online classes. We'll continue to hear, "Why do all of the students have to suffer because of a few with disabilities?" [SUFFER?!? ] So, at the least, provide accommodations when needed and meet your local obligations consistent with legal requirements.

John F. Elmer
Alternate Media Specialist
Educational Assistance Center (DSP&S)
Ventura College
4667 Telegraph Road
Ventura, CA 93003

From: athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu<mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu> [mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Karen Sorensen
Sent: Tuesday, July 30, 2013 3:40 PM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network
Subject: [Athen] More questions

Hi Accessibility Comrades,
Two questions:

1. What are folks doing about inaccessible publisher materials in online courses? Considering the recent Lousiana Tech University OCR decision, I am recommending we not allow them. But I don't know if we will be able to pull that off. What are others doing?
2. Does anyone know of an accessible home lab kit for online chemistry classes? We currently use LabPaq but it's not accessible for those with visual or mobility disabilities. Any suggestions?


Karen M. Sorensen
Accessibility Advocate for Online Courses
Portland Community College
"The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect." Tim Berners-Lee
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