On February 15, we held our first Idea Lab for the 2011 Impact Grant (IG) recipients. Idea Labs are an opportunity for our IG recipients to learn about each other’s projects and collaborate and brainstorm together, as well as have an opportunity to meet with faculty and staff from around the university.
Since this was the first opportunity to bring Lisa Lee (Histology) and Jackie Miller (Statistics) together, we took this time to introduce each other and talk about their respective projects. I also invited Ken Petri from the Web Accessibility Center to join us so he could provide our recipients considerations and insights during this planning phase and help us ensure the projects adhere to accessibility policies and guidelines.
In all, it was a successful meeting where the project leads asked interesting questions to each other, prompting deeper thought and clarity of the projects, as well as promoted new ideas for their own projects.
Some accessibility considerations for the projects include:
- looking at export options that optimize the recorded webinar transcribing process and the possibility of adding captioning or at least providing speaker notes with archived lectures.
- ensuring that PowerPoint documents follow basic guidelines for accessibility.
- being aware of alternatives for graphical information, such as writing out in prose format statistics formulas and/or providing alternative descriptions for complex charts and other data graphics.
- providing captioning within Camtasia for recorded modules/screen captures.
- developing web pages and modules in alignment with accessibility guidelines.
- ensuring that Flash-based histology slide viewer is fully keyboard navigable.
In sum, Ken stressed investigation of “best practices” for creation of web content and considering platforms, technology, and techniques that work best with the broadest spectrum of ability. He also provided some general resources in regard to accessibility:
- WebAIM (webaim.org), especially their WCAG 2.0 checklist (webaim.org/standards/wcag/checklist)
- UIUC’s HTML Best Practices (html.cita.illinois.edu) and Illinois’ Information Technology Accessibility Act Guidelines (www.dhs.state.il.us/IITAA/IITAAWebImplementationGuidelines.html)
- OSU Web Accessibility Center information on accessible YouTube and web video (go.osu.edu/ytpc and go.osu.edu/jwpc), OSU’s ReadSpeaker deployment (go.osu.edu/readspeaker), and, for reference, the OSU Web Accessibility Policy (go.osu.edu/webpolicy)