Category Archives: Library

Supporting access to textbooks and alternative formats

Praise a publisher – critique a publisher: Autumn 2017

Universities and colleges have a legal obligation to provide resources in accessible formats to print disabled students. However, many of the e-book platforms they subscribe to have limited accessibility or are tied-in to scarcely accessible third-party tools like Adobe Digital Editions. So it is not unusual to need to get the raw file from the publisher … Read more

Accessible library practice – the Bradford example

Sarah George is a Subject Librarian at the University of Bradford. She was made a National Teaching Fellow in 2017 – and her accessibility remit contributed significantly to that recognition. Here she gives a personal take on e-book accessibility and accessibility activism via research and evidence. I am an academic librarian at the University of Bradford, covering the subjects … Read more

E-book audit 2018 – auditing accessibility guidance

Invitation to a New Year Resolution… As the last days of 2017 draw in, Alistair McNaught looks at plans for the 2018 e-book accessibility audit. This will be simpler than the 2016 version but – we believe – more effective. In this season of peace and goodwill to all, we’re looking for an audit that … Read more

Open access resources (OERs) and accessibility

It seems tautological to write a blog post on open access and accessibility. Surely if something is open access then it is open to anyone and therefore accessible to anyone? Alistair McNaught argues that the link between open access and accessibility is more nuanced than you might expect. Authors and institutions need simple guidelines to … Read more

Praise a publisher month

The students leave. The library staff have a chance to breathe, reflect and plan ahead.  August is an excellent month to take the opportunity to say ‘Well done’ to those who have made a difference in supporting disabled students. Using a simple online voting tool Alistair McNaught asked the LIS-Accessibility Jiscmail list who they wanted … Read more

Global Accessibility Awareness Day – Why it matters to everyone

Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) GAAD on May 18 is a day designed to remind those who shape our digital world that they have a critical role in making our future world accessible to everyone. Most designers work to accessibility standards and guidelines that consider the diversity of ways that people access webpages, software and mobile … Read more

The e-book accessibility audit – use and abuse.

The good – it works The e-book accessibility audit (August 2016 to November 2016) was a joint project between several UK Higher Education Institution disability and library services, Jisc and representatives from the book supply industry. More information on the partners is available. The audit had three main purposes: To create a sort of “accessibility Esperanto” … Read more

Delivering words to eyes

Text to speech is great but not everyone gets on with it. What other ways can we deliver words to eyes more efficiently?  What about people who want to read with their eyes but have visual or other difficulties that make scanning normal pages tiring or inefficient? What about those who need bigger fonts but … Read more

Access and Inclusion Strategy: are you digitally inclusive?

Funding changes in Scottish FE sector prompt Margaret McKay to reflect on the wider opportunities for colleges to embrace digital inclusion in widenening participation… A review of funding to support disabled students in FE colleges in Scotland was undertaken last academic year (2015-2016).  Engaging with a wide range of stakeholder groups, the Scottish Funding Council … Read more

Supporting personalisation with roaming profiles

We’ve talked before about the inclusivity benefits that are hidden in the tools and technologies that we use every day and are often overlooked.  This blog by Margaret McKay and Rohan Slaughter describe ways of (i) taking advantage of the Ease of Access features in Windows (ii) how Roaming Profiles set up by the IT … Read more