[Athen] QTI 2.2 specification, MathML, and drop down interactions

steve.noble at louisville.edu steve.noble at louisville.edu
Tue Dec 1 06:50:24 PST 2015

Actually, this issue has surfaced in some of our APIP accessibility task force meetings. You may want to reach out to Paul Grudnitski from Pearson ‎[paul.grudnitski at gmail.com], as he has developed some sample content where he used MathJax in a special configuration to get past this issue. This assumes that your interest is in getting something that works now in your specific implementation, as opposed to fixing the root problem for all mankind.

--Steve Noble
steve.noble at louisville.edu

From: athen-list [athen-list-bounces at mailman13.u.washington.edu] on behalf of Madeleine Rothberg [madeleine_rothberg at wgbh.org]
Sent: Tuesday, December 01, 2015 9:31 AM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network
Subject: Re: [Athen] QTI 2.2 specification, MathML, and drop down interactions


It sounds like you found an interesting bug — maybe in QTI or maybe in the component coding or the browser you are using. You may find people who can help answer your question in the IMS forum for QTI:



Madeleine Rothberg
Senior Subject Matter Expert
National Center for Accessible Media at WGBH
617-300-2492 (voicemail)
madeleine_rothberg at wgbh.org

From: Sean Keegan <skeegan at ccctechcenter.org<mailto:skeegan at ccctechcenter.org>>
Reply-To: Access Technology Higher Education Network <athen-list at u.washington.edu<mailto:athen-list at u.washington.edu>>
Date: Tuesday, November 24, 2015 8:12 PM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network <athen-list at u.washington.edu<mailto:athen-list at u.washington.edu>>
Subject: [Athen] QTI 2.2 specification, MathML, and drop down interactions


I have an assessment application that developers are building according to the QTI 2.2 specification. One of the interaction types is that of a dropdown choice (like a <select> menu) but implemented using Angular-Bootstrap. It is based off the following:

As an example - there could be a sentence with a word missing and the dropdown menu would offer several choices so as to complete the sentence.

While this interaction type can be made accessible and works fine for text content, it fails when MathML is used to present any math content. Visually the math is presented, but the MathML content cannot be read by any assistive technologies. In fact, interacting with this component from the keyboard becomes problematic if any AT is running at the time.

As part of the IMS QTI 2.2 specification, MathML is "approved" for use in certain interaction types, one being InlineChoiceGroup in which the dropdown interaction is used. We have AT that supports MathML and yet by following the IMS QTI 2.2 specification, that content is no longer communicated to the user.

I have been reviewing the Accessible Portable Item Protocol and best practices, but this points to the QTI 2.1 specification and does not appear to provide any direction as to how to resolve such an issue.

Looking for suggestions from anyone who has any experience with these specifications.

Take care,

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