In spring 2020, the emergency pivot to remote learning significantly increased the number of roadblocks for students with disabilities. A year later, many higher education institutions are still struggling to achieve universal design. A growing share of online coursework now contains PDFs, a file format that is difficult for higher education IT departments to make accessible. Meanwhile, unexpected hurdles seem to emerge each day. PBS reports that most COVID-19 vaccine information and registration websites are not accessible for people with visual impairments, creating challenges for IT leaders as they support campus reopening plans. While it may not always be possible to achieve 100 percent accessibility, here are some approaches higher education IT teams can take — even with limited resources — to improve learning experiences for students with disabilities.
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