Holistic approaches to e-learning accessibility

Lawrie Phipps, Brian Kelly

Abstract

The importance of accessibility to digital e-learning resources is widely acknowledged. The World Wide Web Consortium Web Accessibility Initiative has played a leading role in promoting the importance of accessibility and developing guidelines that can help when developing accessible web resources. The accessibility of e-learning resources provides additional challenges. While it is important to consider the technical and resource related aspects of e-learning when designing and developing resources for students with disabilities, there is a need to consider pedagogic and contextual issues as well. A holistic framework is therefore proposed and described, which in addition to accessibility issues takes into account learner needs, learning outcomes, local factors, infrastructure, usability and quality assurance. The practical application and implementation of this framework is discussed and illustrated through the use of examples and case studies.

DOI: 10.1080/09687760500479860

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