Dr. Ally – a diagnosis for digital accessibility

Dr. Ally – a diagnosis for digital accessibility

You’ve just uploaded a PDF to Moodle. It’s visual, colourful and you’ve invested a lot of time creating it. But what’s this? A bright red dial has appeared next to the file!

A Red dial next to your file in Moodle means there multiple accessibility issues

This is Blackboard Ally letting you know that there are accessibility issues with your file. As a college, LCC has a reasonably high accessibility score with an 80% average; however, there are still nearly 1,800 documents on Moodle with accessibility flaws.

And so, on Thursday, March 17th, Lee Leewis dressed in a white lab coat and hosted a drop-in session as Dr. Ally, helping to diagnose and cure some of the most common accessibility issues at LCC including missing alt text, poor colour contrast, missing headings, and reading order.

Accessibility problemsWhy is it important?
Images missing Alt TextText based, alternative descriptions for your images help students understand the image’s purpose, especially students using screen-readers.
Poor colour contrastThere should be a clear colour contrast when text is overlaid on top of an image, otherwise it’s difficult to read.
Missing document headingsHeading styles like H1, H2, P, or Title help organise information and create a clear reading structure, particularly for screen-readers and assistive technology.
Missing table headingsScreen readers and other assistive technologies rely on table headings to know what each column or row represents.
Incorrect reading orderWith PowerPoint or Keynote in particular, the order in which you add content often determines the order in which it is read by screen readers and other assistive tools. This can be particularly problematic the more material you have on your slides.
This table outlines common accessibility issues at LCC and the reason why is it important to resolve them

Lee also handed out prescriptions for quick accessibility fixes in course documents, PDFs, and PowerPoints.

You can download his 1 page perscriptions to improve the accessibilty of your documents below, or you can visit our other articles Making Accessibility a Habit: Word documents and PowerPoints.


Coming Soon…

The Secret Library, a digital accessibility escape room

In the next instalment of Dr. Ally, Lee will present a virtual escape room using corrupted documents, PDFs, and PowerPoints as keys to the next room.

Tuesday, May 10th from 11.00 – 12.00 on Collaborate Ultra

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