Monday, June 13, 2011

Accessibility to Technology

This is the internationally recognized symbol ...Image via Wikipedia

Now that you've finally made it to the summer, it's time to get to that list of things you want to do.   If you're like me, you have a number of ideas and projects for education that have been sitting on the back burner.  One topic I'll be pursuing is the accessibility of technology for people with disabilities.

I have to admit that this is an area I haven't considered in my fervor to integrate technology.  It is, however, an issue that I've noticed more and more in the material I come across.  Like this article in Campus Technology entitled "Department of Ed Expands on Accessibility Issue in Ed Tech",  most point out that education is meant to be provided to everyone no matter what form it takes.  Web content providers, such as myself, need to take this into account as we publish our material for use in the classroom.  W3C, the World Wide Web Consortium lists some areas to consider:
  • alternative text for images
  • keyboard input
  • transcripts for podcasts
I believe the first item is most relevant to what I provide with  I have embraced the visual content of Google Earth as a prime feature of my work, but I haven't considered how someone who is visually impaired would be able to complete the tasks.  I could be wrong.  There could be more issues that I need to address and so that is why I plan on learning more.  The W3C site seems to be a good place to start.

Please share your thoughts or send me resources to accomplish this.  If you like, I can post a follow up entry in the future.

On a different topic, I am gearing up for the ISTE 2011 convention in Philadelphia.  I have a poster session on Wednesday, June 29 from 11am-1pm.  If you're attending the convention I hope you take time to stop by and say hi.
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