June 26-28, 2024
Long Beach, CA

A Shared Priority at SDCCD: The Accessibility, Design & Usability Project

Leadership and Administration
All Audiences

Presented by:

  • Donna Eyestone, Faculty/DE Coordinator/Accessibility Lead, San Diego Community College District
  • Poppy Fitch, Director, Disability Support Programs & Services (DSPS), San Diego Community College District
  • Brian Weston, Dean, Online and Distributed Learning, San Diego Community College District

Speaker Bio:

  • In 1989 Donna combined her interests in music and technology to complete a BA in Computer Music Composition from Clark University. She went on to earn MFAs in Electronic Music Recording from the Mills College Center for Contemporary Music and in Integrated Electronic Arts from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1996. Donna has been teaching multimedia, both online and in the classroom in the Bay Area since 1996. She is currently teaching Digital Audio Production and is the DE Coordinator at the College of San Mateo. She is the Lead Accessibility Mentor for the SDCCD Accessibility, Usability & Design Project.
  • Poppy Fitch is an equity focused community college educator, system reform advocate, feminist, and former foster youth. As Director for Disability Support Programs and Services at the San Diego Community College District, Poppy leads services to students with disabilities and is partner to a dynamic team of dedicated student equity champions who run support programs that change lives through education. Poppy is passionate about online education as a mechanism for increasing access to higher education and is motivated by the importance of the access to higher education systems because they have the power to change lives and communities.
  • Brian started working in California Community College’s as an American Sign Language Interpreter and progressed into Information Technology and Teaching. Brian serves as the Dean of Online & Distributed Learning at San Diego Community College District. He leads the Districtwide Distance Education Steering Committee, Educational Services Software Workgroup, and Student Textbook Affordability Committee for the district. His focus is enhancing online programs and course offerings while ensuring students have access to college services.

Session Info:

The Accessibility, Design & Usability Project is a collaboration between SDCCD’s Online Learning Pathways department and Disability Support Programs and Services to enhance accessibility, usability, and universal design practices to support compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act within online instruction. The project’s scope involves the procurement and implementation of accessibility evaluation software, funding staff to develop, market, and support faculty professional development to infuse Universal Design principles as it relates to accessibility and usability. This unique project creates a strong partnership between faculty teaching online and campus DSPS professionals. Each of the 4 colleges in the District has established a funded Accessibility Mentor position to offer workshops and to work individually with faculty to make their courses more accessible. Informed by Section D of the CVC-OEI Rubric, and the use of Ally, the team recognized that remediation of four specific issues would significantly improve accessibility: alt text for images, use of heading styles, proper use of an accessibility checker in Canvas, and making O365 documents compliant. The team created extensive website and Canvas teaching materials for each Accessibility Mentor to use in their direct work with faculty. Additionally, the tools have been integrated into the District’s Online Faculty Certification Program for new online faculty. Increasing the accessibility of digital content delivered to students in a variety of formats creates a more equitable experiences for students with disabilities, increases access for students, and improves learning and engagement. Key Project Objectives • Infuse a universal design lens to online course design as it relates to proactive accessibility; consider accessibility to benefit all students. • Identify, understand and remedy online instructional materials that present potential barriers for students. • Provide training/support for faculty on how to create accessible course materials and remediate inaccessible course materials using District supported software and training.

Session Outcomes:

  • Model an effective Accessibility Mentor Program.
  • Understand funding sources and challenges.
  • Access tools to implement an Accessibility project on your campus

Session Resources:

A Shared Priority at sdccd EYESTONE

View the Recorded Session

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