eLearning Accessibility Considerations

Accessibility, for us, is not just about ticking the technology boxes. Instead, we strive to go beyond just incorporating the technical standards (A, AA, AAA) and focus on the value of inclusion. Our customized digital learning services help you provide equal learning opportunities and fulfill eLearning Accessibility Considerations.

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Businesses that integrate accessibility are more likely to be innovative, inclusive enterprises that reach more people with positive brand messaging that meets emerging global legal requirements.
- W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI)

What is the value of Accessibility for the learners?

Accessibility, in its widest sense, means that learners are not excluded from using learning resources based on their disabilities. It aims at empowering learners with a disability of any kind to complete a task in a similar amount of time and effort as someone without it.

Developing disability-aware learning interventions means that the content must be designed in a way that makes it possible to be used by anyone. In terms of online learning (fully self-paced or blended or VILT), accessible content must be designed and developed in a way that allows people with disabilities to use it with ease. It should allow them to find, understand, and navigate content without difficulty.

When organizations integrate Web accessibility into their processes, they become innovative, inclusive firms with a positive brand message that touch a large segment of employees and also meet global legal requirements. A recent research of Fortune 100 companies indicates that disability inclusion, as part of an overall diversity strategy, is common practice among high-performing businesses.

Instructional Designers are moving beyond their usual composition of course content to ensure that they deliver a more universal design of learning. When eLearning content is designed to meet all accessibility guidelines, it becomes eLearning that is applicable to everyone—be it employees, the general public, whether they are hard of hearing, have a physical disability, or are completely blind.

Why should organizations and L&D teams invest on eLearning Accessibility Considerations?

Accessible eLearning emphasizes the importance of attracting, upskilling, and retaining talent in your organization and expresses care for all employees. Demand has changed the nature of eLearning Accessibility requirements. In such circumstances, eLearning Accessibility fosters inclusive learning and ensures maintaining diversity and inclusion as part of the learning environment.

Adult learners need to be motivated enough and connected to their learning experiences in ways that best suit their personas. If a learner with a disability tries to take a virtual training course that isn’t (unintentionally) inclusive enough, the experience would be frustrating and discouraging for the learner and would lead to lost opportunities and far-reaching functional, legal, and psychological ramifications.

How can EI Design help you leverage eLearning Accessibility Considerations for your training programs?

EI Design’s practice of eLearning Accessibility is built on the maxim that learning is a process of discovery, which involves the use of the senses to absorb and process information through cognition. Our expertise in technology-driven electronic mediums can help you personalize learning keeping learners’ mental, social, physical, and cognitive abilities to the fore.

Our practice of learning inclusivity goes beyond just abiding by the written guidelines for accessibility, yet we are well-aware of the major laws and guidelines that govern accessibility worldwide. This knowledge, whether accessibility is a gesture of goodwill or a crucial requirement, affects the development process and the tools and solutions we choose and helps us make informed decisions.

There are three major laws and guidelines that govern accessibility:

  • The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in the US (The Equality Act in the UK).
  • Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (The European Accessibility Act in Europe).
  • Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).

The tools (Assistive Technologies) that we consider to create all-encompassing accessible eLearning courses are Storyline 360, Lectora Inspire 12, Captivate 2019, iSpring 10, Elucidat, and dominKnow.

At EI Design, we are not just aware of the requirements and regulations about accessibility, but we also have an action plan for its implementation.

Our action plan is based on the following pillars:

  1. Robust Solution Design.
  2. Dedicated Team.
  3. Well-Defined Project Workflow.
  4. Well-Defined Pedagogical, Design, and Technological Considerations.
  5. Holistic Testing.
  6. Expertise with Tools and Techniques.
Our Best Practices for Creating High-impact eLearning Accessibility Considerations Driven Training

1

Provide a better learning experience – for all users

We consider all possible forms of disabilities while crafting learning programs to ensure we deliver high-value learning without having to retro-fit at later stages.

2

Choose to present content in multiple ways

We follow techniques like pairing non-text content with a text alternative or support visual multimedia content with a description to allow the absorption of learning effectively. Our Performance Support Tools too add value in this context.

3

Arrange, format, and provide clear content for learners

Our design fundamentals like HTML markups to organize and structure content or visual styling to make content clear and discernable ensure stickiness in learning. Techniques like “light” Microlearning without heavy graphics and videos take care of bandwidth challenges.

4

Offer consistent content and navigation

We provide “help notes” or “welcome tutorials” to promote consistency in learning thereby decreasing the learning curve and improving eLearning accessibility—for everyone.

5

Design with flexibility in mind

We offer multiple content formats and communication channels to make courses flexible. You can use tools like Adobe Connect for workshops where learners with a hearing impairment can use text to engage or utilize a platform with zoom features for learners with visual impairment.

6

Create links that are friendly for learners with disabilities

We customize hyperlinks by making small changes such as visually descriptive links to help learners with fine motor skill challenges identify and click links more easily.

7

Partner in assessing web platforms

During the Needs Analysis phase, we closely partner with customer teams to map eLearning Accessibility requirements with features their platforms offer and consult for considerations if new platforms are to be procured.

8

Conduct assessments

We perform initial surveys and assessments with several groups spanning IT and web design teams, sponsors, stakeholders, and even a niche cohort of user groups to ensure we have all the requirements to meet the eLearning Accessibility Considerations.

9

Promote awareness

We regularly update ourselves and our customer stakeholders for progress in the eLearning Accessibility domains to ensure improvements and suggestions when the need arises.

10

Continuous process improvement

Our innovation initiatives ensure enhancing effectiveness through a variety of methods including a dedicated focus on UX lab and testing for engagement and immersion in eLearning Accessibility Considerations.

Looking to build customized digital learning services to provide equal learning opportunities and fulfill eLearning Accessibility Considerations for your learners?

Contact us!

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