Blog Post, Scholarly Work

Accessibility & Digital Environments (Faculty Brown Bag Session)

Bringing DHSI to UB-SIM

I attended the Digital Humanities Summer Institute (DHSI)in June 2017 and completed the Accessibility and Digital Environments course, led by the wonderful Erin Templeton and George Williams. Today, I’ll be sharing a little of what I learned with the faculty of the University at Buffalo program in Singapore during an informal brown bag lunch session.

For faculty who are not able to attend – and for general visitors to the blog – I’ve included slides and an outline with links are below. Questions are always welcome in the comments or via email (hb24 at or Twitter (@heatherlynnsg).


To view and download a PDF copy of the slides: Accessibility & Digital Environment Slides

Outline & Relevant Links

Key Questions:

  • What is accessibility?
  • Why is it worth planning ahead for accessibility?
  • What are some practical steps toward creating accessibility?
  • What are the challenges to creating accessible environments?

Accessibility vs. Accommodation

Brainstorming session among the faculty. What do you think of when you hear “accessibility”? How about “accommodation”?

Models of Disability

The Medical Model vs. The Social Model of Disability

Why plan ahead for accessibility?

Practical & Humanistic Reasons to Plan Ahead

Practical Steps

UB’s Course Management Systems

Accessibility features on UB Learns & Digication

Document Design

Designing Syllabus Documents

Websites and Media for Teachers and Students

Overarching Practical Application

Involve students (especially students with disabilities) from the very beginning.

Some perspective on accessible designs

Deaf Space: What would spaces built for Deaf people look like? How do hearing-oriented spaces exclude Deaf people?

Frozen Descriptive Trailer: A fun example of visual content represented in descriptive ways that are accessible to people who are Blind or low vision.

General Resources

DHSI: Accessibility & Digital Environments Course Page

Collaborative Bibliography of Accessibility Resources on Zotero

Everything from WebAIM

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