Accessible Technology

Archived No

Effective Date

Steward Associate VP for Computing and Communications

Approval Authority President and Vice Presidents

Previous Version Access to Information Technology for People with Disabilities (archived)

Full Text of the Policy

Purpose/Rationale

Consistent with our commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive environment and in accordance with federal and state laws, The Evergreen State College provides accessible technology in all of our educational and administrative services, programs, and activities.  This policy extends to the college’s electronic and information technologies (EIT) and applies to procurement, development, implementation and ongoing maintenance.

Ensuring equal and effective electronic and information technologies (EIT) access is an institutional responsibility extending across all programs, divisions and departments.

Definitions

 “Accessible” means that individuals with disabilities are able to independently acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same services within the same timeframe as individuals without disabilities, with substantially equivalent ease and effectiveness of use. 

 “Electronic and information technology” or “EIT” includes information technology and any equipment or interconnected system or subsystem of equipment that is used in the creation, conversion, or duplication of data or information. The term electronic and information technology includes, but is not limited to, internet and intranet websites, content delivered in digital form, electronic books and electronic book reading systems, search engines and databases, learning management systems, classroom technology and multimedia, personal response systems ("clickers"), classroom podiums, office equipment , copiers and fax machines. It also includes any equipment or interconnected system or subsystem of equipment that is used in the automatic acquisition, creation, storage, manipulation, management, movement, control, display, switching, interchange, transmission, or reception of data or information. This term includes telecommunications products (such as telephones), information kiosks, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) transaction machines, computers, ancillary equipment, software, firmware and similar procedures, services (including support services), and related resources.

“Equally Effective” means that the alternative formats or medium communicates the same information in as timely a manner as does the original format or medium.

This policy applies to:

While every employee of the college bears the responsibility of ensuring equal and effective electronic and information technologies (EIT) access, the Director of Computing & Communications, Director of Access Services, Academic Dean for Instructional Support & Library & Media Services and Campus Web Manager, are responsible for developing and maintaining operations and initiatives that ensure college-wide adoption and support of this policy.  

Questions and concerns regarding this policy and its operational implementation should be directed to the Director of Computing and Communications.

For procedures governing reasonable accommodations, grievances and/or complaints related to inaccessible information technology, follow the procedures found in these policies:

 

Operational Roles and Responsibilities

Accessibility to electronic and information technology requires many dynamic guidelines be maintained across many platforms. Through ongoing exploration, adaptation, assessment and change, college employees collaborate as a community to strive for and maintain accessibility.

The College recognizes that electronic and information technology and the manner in which it is used by the College are constantly evolving.   As such, the electronic and information technology identified below will be procured and maintained in a manner that satisfies the College’s commitment to accessibility to electronic and information technology.

1.     Electronic Information Technology Accessibility (EITA) Working Group

2.     College websites and online software applications

College websites and software applications available online include all web pages, websites, web content, social media and web-based software published, hosted or otherwise, used by the college.

Computing and Communications, Marketing and Communications and Library staff will:

3.     Electronic instructional materials and assignments

Instructional materials include but are not limited to syllabi, textbooks, presentations (live and recorded), handouts used within the college’s learning management systems and in face-to-face classes. Electronic instructional assignments include but are not limited to online collaborative writing, web conferencing and media postings.

Faculty will:

Computing and Communications and Library Staff will:

Library and Academic Program Support staff will:

Access Services will:

4.     Library electronic collections and user interfaces

Library collections include but are not limited to e-journals, databases, e-books, electronic course reserves, and digital and streaming media. Library user interfaces include but are not limited to the library website, databases or other electronic resources, interlibrary loan application, and the online catalog.

Library faculty and staff will:

5.     Electronic Documents and media

Documents include but are not limited to text documents, PDFs, spreadsheets, presentations, publications, and scanned items uploaded or posted online. Electronic media include video and audio.

Faculty and Instruction Staff will:

Library Media Services and Electronic Media Staff will:

6.     Procurement

This applies to all college EIT purchases and acquisitions including “free” or “no cost” products or services of EIT excluding individual use, single-license EIT.  All EIT purchases and items on the approved product lists must have an accessibility assessment and approval. Vendors are required to complete and provide accessibility-specific documentation for all EIT products or services covered under the Section 508 standards and the most current Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). This documentation may include a Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) and other documents that allow the college to determine the level of complianceavailable for each product in making a purchasing decision.

Computing and Communications will:

            College Staff with Purchase Authority will:

Authority

Federal laws include the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), and the Amendments Act of 2008, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Section 508 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act as amended.

Washington state laws and policies include Discrimination – Human Rights Commission (Chapter 49.60 RCW) and Students with disabilities (Chapter 28B.10.910 to 28B.10.923).

Applicable standards and guidelines include those most currently published by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) as a target for meeting web content accessibility and those published by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

See Also

Related:

Students with Disabilities

Employees with Disabilities

Non-Discrimination Policy and Procedures