Category: Uncategorized

Why bother with accessible learning and teaching?

If you have ever asked:

“Why should we bother creating accessible learning and teaching?”

Have a look at this wonderful video about Joe!

MOOCS have to be accessible in the US!

When students with a disability took on the Goliaths of MIT and Harvard with regard to the accessibility of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCS) that they were offering through edX, many internationally thought that they would fail.

In the agreement reached with the US Federal Court however it was deemed that edX, which has over 60 university members and is teaching globally over 3,000,000 students, was required to remedy its alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Reaffirming the position of the Global Access Project (GAP), U.S. Attorney Ortiz stated:

“Critical portions of education are moving online, in tandem with the rest of our social experience, … This new, educational online world readily can, and should be, built from the outset in a way that does not discriminate against those with disabilities.”

So what will be the impact of this decision in Australia New Zealand and beyond?

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Sharon Kerr CEO GAP – USA & Canada webinar

In March this year Sharon Kerr, CEO of Global Access Project presented at the world’s largest assistive technology conference – CSUN in San Diego USA. The response to her presentation was such that she has been asked to present again – this time via webinar to universities and colleges across both Canada and the United States of America. Continue reading

Harvard, M.I.T. – Who will be next?

Two of the world’s top universities, Harvard and M.I.T. are both looking down the barrel of federal lawsuits, for failing to provide captions and transcripts of online learning material.  The New York Times reported on February 12, 2015 that:

“Advocates for the deaf on Thursday filed federal lawsuits against Harvard and M.I.T., saying both universities violated antidiscrimination laws by failing to provide closed captioning in their online lectures, courses, podcasts and other educational materials.”

Globally, disability staff and community organisations have hesitated to press the compliance button and instead focussed on human rights, the value of social inclusion and diversity for the entire student cohort.

Now however, in the United States at least, it would appear that the gloves are off in the fight for accessible education for people with a disability.

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Excuse me, is your university access-friendly?

This is the question that all students need to ask before choosing where to study.

Uncertain students standing with question mark cards

A university that is access-friendly:

WILL have all learning materials developed and delivered in such a way that you can access them using your mobile device and personal applications. Many students choose to listen to their readings while exercising or working. By having all learning materials accessible, you will have the choice to use text to speech and other apps.

WILL have Continue reading

Thank you Stella

The Global Access Project team would like to take this opportunity to recognise Stella Young for the person she was, the changes she made and the leadership she gave.

Stella changed our world by challenging attitudes and introducing humour where others could just not laugh.

This TEDX presentation of Stella’s provides an insight into the person she was , her dynamic personality and her passion for life.

What is the Cost of a Free Product?

by Tim Connell –
First published by the Braille Monitor November 4,  2014
Image of Tim Connell in casual blue shirt facing the camera

Tim Connell

Introduction by the Editor of Braille Monitor: A longstanding debate has flourished among blind people about the technology we use. One objection is its cost and, closely related to that, its difference from what people who are not blind are purchasing and using. All of us are looking for bargains, and it is never easy to ignore a sentence in which the word “free” figures prominently. Also attractive is using the same technology that sighted people use, because it is usually less expensive, readily available, and easier to replace if it fails.

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© 2014 - Global Access Project