Learning must be found easily at any time, and all learners and teachers have equitable access, regardless of culture, language, ability etc. Accessible learning means that all people have access to it. In technical terms, it is commonly used in four ways:
- Available time: Students can access the learning for the course outside of class, 24-7
- Access regardless of disability or learning difference: The course meets required accessibility standards that allow people with different learning needs to still have access. An example is adding written descriptions to a picture (alt tag) so a screen reader can tell a person with a visual impairment what is in the picture
- Access regardless of social or cultural difference: Students with barriers have alternative modes of access. An example is students who speak a different language can turn on a translation function.
- Access device: A student can use a mobile device and or a popular different browser, and still have a good visual and functional experience like a student with a standard desktop.
Michael teaches two students who he knows will need more time to write assignments according to Access and Equity services. He uses Canvas to set a different time window for the release of the assignment and the return date. Michael also provides extra examples of what he is looking for, and posts those on Canvas to help provide clearer direction for students who value or need that.
Breadth of Options (3E)
Below are examples of using learning technologies that provide choice, opportunity and voice for all students, making learning accessible. For more examples of using learning technologies under the 3E Framework, see Illustrative examples of using learning technologies with the 3E framework.
Instructor uses Canvas to set different time windows for the release of assignments and due dates.
Instructor directs students to the accessibility tool in Canvas, Microsoft Immersive Reader, to assist students reading and listening to written text.
Instructor uses open educational resources (OER) instead of commercial texts or homework systems to increase financial access and equity barriers.
Students can choose the format for their submissions, including written, video, audio or poster presentations.
- How to use Canvas to make learning more accessible
- Understanding how Canadian higher education defines accessible learning
- View the LTE rubric to see how technologies are evaluated for this principle