Presenter: Tharindu Liyanagunawardena (PhD, FHEA, CMALT), Chair of the Online Learning Research Centre, UCEM.
In this webinar, I will share my experience of the process of implementing accessibility practices at University College of Estate Management (UCEM) and how this experience led to the forthcoming book chapter “Open to Inclusion: exploring openness for differently-abled”.
As a supported online learning provider, UCEM course materials are provided using a range of technologies such as podcasts, videos, interactive e-learning content, audio PowerPoints, e-books and webinars. However, unless the content is designed with accessibility in mind, non-textual materials may not be readily accessible by students with disabilities. There is also the financial cost of additional time and resources required to make reasonable accommodations if accessibility of materials was not considered from the start.
In the book chapter, “Open to Inclusion: exploring openness for differently-abled”, the accessibility of various open content, such as Open Educational Resources (OERs) and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), is considered. The chapter introduces Khalid, Sophie, Chamari and Arun, fictitious personas with various disabilities, who are keen to access ‘open’ content to learn and develop themselves. The readers are invited to explore with them the obstacles they have to overcome when accessing these ‘open’ content and whether the difficulties they encounter may differ had they happened to live elsewhere in the world. The chapter presents the case for inclusion and accessibility, and highlights the importance of raising awareness.
Liyanagunawardena, T.R., Adams, A.A., & Williams, S.A. (2018). Open to Inclusion: exploring openness for differently-abled, In Ecologies of open: Inclusion, intersections, and interstices in education (forthcoming).
Liyanagunawardena T.R., & Hussain, A. (2017). Online Distance Education Materials and Accessibility: Case Study of University College of Estate Management. In Vincenti G., Bucciero A., Helfert M., & Glowatz M. (eds) E-Learning, E-Education, and Online Training. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering, vol 180. Springer, Cham.
Nadan, T., Forster, S. & Liyanagunawardena, T.R. (2017). Captioning Videos for Accessibility: A Case Study of University College of Estate Management, Presented at Association for Learning Technology ALT Annual Conference 2017, 5–7 September 2017, Liverpool, UK.
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