Training in ICT Accessibility

The Student Support Centre (SSC), in cooperation with the Vodafone Spain Foundationand several University of Alicante services, has launched Inclusive Educational Platforms and Accessible Electronic Documents, a project intended to improve, provide training in and promote accessible information and communications technologies (ICTs) in the university community.

 

Motivation

Ever since it was founded, the Student Support Centre (SSC) has been socially committed to the principles of equal opportunities and design for all. For fifteen years, much has been done at the UA to ensure that groups at greater risk of social exclusion can pursue further studies – including, of course, people with specific educational needs who require our support and attention.

In this new technological era, digital educational platforms and new virtual spaces are fully in place at this university. Just like in other areas, such as curriculum adaptations, we must be up to the challenge and break down "digital barriers", as these are potential obstacles to learning and give rise to new gaps which often go unseen.

Today's university requires its service, administration, research and academic staff to be aware of what the university community needs.

Technically speaking, contents must be accessible and displayed in the same way on all devices: personal computers, technological support for people with disabilities, or mobile devices like mobiles and tablets. They must also overcome limitations such as noisy environments, rooms with too much or too little light, hands-free systems, etc.

A wealth of rich contents is available nowadays, featuring multimedia, animations, video tutorials, audio files, text insertion, vector graphics, etc. Furthermore, digital learning platforms – and any other website – must be accessible and comply with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0).

What makes the difference here is that the UA teaching platforms are more homogeneous and consistent and, at the same time, content accessibility is ensured. This should not be seen as additional work, but rather as an organisational requirement which, once in place, will improve management and teaching in terms of efficiency and suitability.

  Here is the barrier-free digital space we want to build – with everybody, for everybody.

 

 Training plan

Target audience: service and administration staff (SAS)
Objectives
  • Becoming familiar with the technological support employed by people with disabilities to access contents and the main accessibility issues involved.
  • Learning the fundamentals and requirements (WCAG 2.0.) of e-document accessibility.
  • Applying information and communications technologies as a corporate integration tool.
  • Applying accessibility standards to Office Word.
  • Exporting files from and into various formats.
  • Understanding the specific features of audiovisual material and using tools to adapt it.
  • Learning to create and edit accessible PDF files.
  • Assessing document accessibility by means of automatic tools.
2016 editions: Creating accessible e-documents.
  • Sixth edition: date to be confirmed.
  • Seventh edition: date to be confirmed.
2015 editions: Creating accessible e-documents.
  • Fourth edition: 2, 4, 9, 11 and 15 June 2015.
  • Fifth edition: 19, 20, 26, 28 and 30 October 2015.
2014 editions: Creating accessible e-documents.
  • First edition: 26, 28 and 30 May, 2 and 4 June 2014.
  • Second edition: 14, 15, 16, 21, 22 and 23 October 2014.
  • Third edition: 24, 25 and 26 November and 2, 3 and 4 December 2014.

The service and administration staff (SAS) must sign up for the courses through the SAS Training and Internationalisation Service . Deadlines will be available on that service's web page and on this one.

 

Target audience: research and academic staff (RAS)
Objectives
  • Becoming familiar with the technological support employed by people with disabilities to access contents and the main accessibility issues involved.
  • Learning the fundamentals and requirements (WCAG 2.0.) of e-document accessibility.
  • Applying information and communications technologies as an inclusive tool in learning.
  • Applying accessibility standards to Office Word and PowerPoint.
  • Exporting files from and into various formats.
  • Understanding the specific features of audiovisual material and using tools to adapt it.
  • Learning to create and edit accessible PDF files.
  • Assessing document accessibility by means of automatic tools.

The research and academic staff must sign up for the courses through the Education Science Institute . Deadlines will be available on the Institute's web page and on this one.

 
Target audience: IT Service staff, UA centres and departments.
Objectives
  • Becoming familiar with the technological support employed by people with disabilities and the main accessibility issues involved.
  • Understanding the fundamentals and requirements of web accessibility according to the WCAG 2.0. guidelines (mandatory for level AA. Spanish Standard 139803).
  • Learning good practice concerning usable and accessible web development.
  • Applying accessibility standards to Office Word, PDF and audiovisual documents.
  • Assessing website and document accessibility by means of automatic and non-automatic tools.

Editions of the course Web and E-Document Accessibility.

  • First edition: 7, 9, 11, 14, 16 and 18 July 2014. From 9.30 to 11.30 a.m.
  • Second edition: 19, 21, 23, 26, 28 and 30 January 2015.
  • Third edition: 11, 13, 15, 18, 20 and 22 May 2015.

 Promotion sessions

On 7 October 2014 we held a session on technological resources for social inclusiveness. with the participation of Spanish and international experts such as Olga Carreras, Emmanuelle Gutierrez o Federico Rueda. It also featured advances in accessible ICT research, such as Google Glass for the visually impaired or text simplification software.

You can check out the videos and contents of this session on technological resources for social inclusiveness.

 

 Contact

For all queries or suggestions on this project to promote accessible ICTs, please contact José María Fernándezat josema.fernandez@ua.es.