Accessing Higher Ground will address the need for accessibility topics to be included in college-level courses. The 21st annual Accessible Media, Web and Technology Conference will be held Nov. 12–16 at the the Westin hotel in Westminster, Colorado. Members of the CU community can receive a $75 discount on the registration fees.
“The conference offers a unique opportunity to learn from speakers across the country, and some outside the country, who are leaders in the field of universal design and accessibility. The concepts discussed at the conference are not simply about making information, websites and curricula more accessible, it’s about making them more usable, which should be a key goal of any course, product or system,” said Howard Kramer, a proponent of the integration of universal design into curricula and a lecturer in Continuing Education at CU Boulder.
For the second year in a row, the conference also will address the need for accessibility topics to be included in college-level courses. AHG will offer a special Teaching About Accessibility track of workshops for faculty interested in including accessibility and inclusive design topics in their computer science, web design or technology-related courses. One of the offerings is a full-day pre-conference workshop on Teaching about Accessibility in Computing and IT Courses, taught by faculty who will bring in perspectives and promising practices from the field.
A number of main conference sessions will address similar topics, such as Teaching Accessibility: Case studies of courses that include accessibility topics in their curricula, and Teaching Accessibility & Multi-Screen Design – a Content Strategy Master’s Course.
“The business community, especially tech companies, have become much more interested in hiring IT candidates with accessibility knowledge,” says Kramer. “However, they indicate that very few recent graduates considered for hire have learned about accessibility in their degree program. This special track of sessions aims to address this problem by raising awareness and providing resources that faculty can use to incorporate accessibility topics in their classes.”
The Teaching about Accessibility track at Accessing Higher Ground is a project of Promoting the Integration of Universal Design in University Curriculum (UDUC), funded in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, to promote the integration of Universal Design and accessibility content in university curriculum.
This year’s keynote speaker, Britney Wilson, staff attorney and Dodyk Fellow at the National Center for Law and Economic Justice, will discuss how disability intersects with race, gender and several of the political issues of the day as well as the need for social justice advocates to recognize and fully incorporate disability and disability rights into their work.
There are also dozens of other workshop about making media, technology and the campus digital environment accessible. Topics include Hands-on Video Accessibility Workshop (with Able Player), Growing an IT Accessibility Program on your Campus, Captioned Media: Developing a Systematic Approach that Meets the Needs of Your Institution, hands-on lab sessions Introduction to PDF Accessibility and Introduction to Online Course Accessibility.
“A key takeaway will be specific resources and methods for not only making curricula, courses and electronic resources more accessible and usable, but guidance on how to include content about universal design and accessibility into courses and curricula,” said Kramer.
Register now for the conference. Campus community members must use their CU email address and enter the discount code “cu4AHG2018” on the payment page to receive the $75 discount.
A limited number of scholarships are available for faculty, staff and students for the Nov. 13 pre-conference session on Teaching about Accessibility in Computing and IT Courses and the Teaching about Accessibility track during the main conference. The deadline to register is Wednesday, Nov. 7.
Please contact Howard Kramer at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-492-8672 if you have any questions about the conference, the UDUC project or the scholarships for the Teaching about Accessibility Track.