[Athen] Adding recording functionality for visually impaired students

Robert Beach rbeach at KCKCC.EDU
Wed Jan 27 06:36:40 PST 2016

I would want more documentation and explanation as to the reason for this accommodation. Remember, just because they ask doesn’t mean we have to give it. There needs to be a need based on documentation and discussion with the student.

Robert Lee Beach
Assistive Technology Specialist
Kansas City Kansas Community College
7250 State Avenue
Kansas City, KS 66112
rbeach at kckcc.edu

From: athen-list [mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman13.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Adam Lipkin
Sent: Wednesday, January 27, 2016 8:00 AM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network
Subject: [Athen] Adding recording functionality for visually impaired students

Hi, folks --

I'm looking for some guidance based on a request from our school's distance learning program:

They have a visually impaired distance learning student, and the school has asked that we accommodate them by adding the ability for the student to record her responses via audio on the discussion boards in Moodle.

I've got a few concerns about this as a reasonable accommodation, but want to make sure that I'm treating this fairly.

First. the discussion boards in Moodle use a standard text interface, so if the students is already able to enter text, they should be able to do so here. Has anyone heard of situations in which text entry for visually impaired students has been an issue (particularly in DL courses), and if audio was the accommodation?

Second, adding new functionality to Moodle is not a simple or easy thing, and requires a reasonable large amount of time and resources to test and ensure that the features don't break other elements (it's not impossible, but since all courses here use the system, adding or changing new functionality mid-semester affects the entire campus). So asking us to do it mid-semester isn't a "reasonable" accommodation unless there's a demonstrated burden.

I've also asked if just using a recording tool locally and uploading the MP3 file to the forum would work, but they seem reluctant.

Have you heard of any situation similar to this? Anyone have any good advice or guidance (or examples of how this has been dealt with elsewhere) here?



Adam Lipkin
Associate Director for Academic Technology
alipkin at brandeis.edu<mailto:alipkin at brandeis.edu>
Brandeis University Library and Technology Services
Mailstop 045
Waltham, MA 02454
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