Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD)
May 21st 2020 marks the annual Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and as part of our commitment to inclusive and accessible education, we are participating in the first ever Ally 'Fix your Content Day'.
For 24 hours, we’ll be on a mission to fix as many accessibility issues with course files as we can. At the end of the day, the University with the most files fixed will be recognised and awarded a prize.
How can you help?
Get involved by setting aside some time on May 21st and start by clicking those red and amber indicators in your courses to fix as many files as you can. If you’re just getting started or trying to make some quick fixes, choose the easiest issues to fix. You can also focus on your lowest scoring content and aim for impact. Or, you can focus on specific issues or tackle the most severe issues first.
Aim for 100%, but improvement is what counts!
On the 21st May, colleagues from TEL, Digital Training & Assistive Technology will be on hand to support staff in fixing their content. Book a 30min 1-1 online appointment with a member of the team by clicking the link below...
In the lead up to GAAD and 'Fix Your Content Day', Digital Training and TEL will be running a series of online workshops...
'Making Accessible Documents' with Digital Training
- Monday 18th May 2pm-3pm
- Tuesday 19th May 12pm-1pm
- Wednesday 20th May 3pm-4pm
'Improving Accessibility in Moodle' with TEL
- Monday 18th May 11am-12pm
- Tuesday 19th May 2pm-3pm
- Wednesday 20th May 10am-11am
Our online Digital Accessibility Training is still available in Moodle.
You can also access this great course on Creating Accessible Documents in Microsoft Office on LinkedIn Learning!
Frequently Asked Questions
There are a number of benefits to improving the accessibility of documents and these are appreciated by all students - including those without a disability.
The Blackboard Ally website provides some instances where improving the accessibility of documents will be beneficial:
Having a proper digital copy of a document instead of a scan makes the document more usable for all students. It might make the document easier to read, especially for low-quality scans, and it also allows students to search through the document and find specific content, copy and paste sections of the document, and so on.
Having a video with captioning or a transcript will make the video more usable for all students. It allows the student to search through the video and find specific parts, the video can still be watched in high-noise environment (for example, commuting), and so on.
Providing a good heading structure for a long document makes the document more usable for all students. It provides additional structure, which makes it easier to work through and process the content. It also allows for a Table of Contents to be generated, which can improve the navigability of the document.
Students see an arrow to the right of each uploaded document. Clicking on this arrow, they can select Alternative formats to access available versions they can download. The alternative documents that are created still depend on the quality of the original document so please improve the original as far as possible.
The only difference that you'll see is the accessibility indicator to the right of documents you upload and the download arrow. Students are not able to see the accessibility indicator. Only the download arrow is visible to them.
Ally helps institutions build a more inclusive learning environment and improve the student experience by helping them take clear control of course content with usability, accessibility and quality in mind.
Log in to Moodle, and you will find the Ally indicators next to files or content. If you have no course files yet, upload one, and an indicator will appear next to the file name. Click the indicator to view your accessibility feedback. Follow along step-by-step to improve your original file.
Please bear in mind that external content linked to through Moodle cannot be checked or converted by Ally. If you need to access external content in alternative formats, please consult the library's webpages about the SensusAccess service.
For more general information on inclusivity and accessibility, please see our web page on this subject.
What is Ally?
Ally integrates with your institution’s learning management system, and provides feedback within your course workflow.
Log-in to your course site, and you will find the Ally indicators next to files or content. If you have no course files yet, upload one, and an indicator will appear next to the file name. Click the indicator to view your accessibility feedback. Follow along step-by-step to improve your original file.
Images and text on Blackboard Ally by Blackboard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.