Disability IT Support Analyst - Michele Farmer

RITS online courses

Creating online versions of existing face-to-face courses has provided myself and the teams within Research IT Services the opportunity to review their existing training materials.

The UCL research community is diverse, and the online courses created will need to be accessible for all users (V1, V2).  One of my concerns with the existing resources are that they are very written text heavy, and are not accessible to all potential participants. As there will need to be a number of adaptions to existing course materials and additional supporting materials will need to be created, both myself and RITS saw this as an opportunity to make the online courses accessible by design. Additionally resources to be created include explanatory videos, diagrams and interactive activities. It is hoped that this will also improve the accessibility of materials used in the ongoing face-to-face courses.  

To date we have directly involved Michele with the selection of the style sheet for course web sites.  Testing of resources for compatibility with support tools such as the screen-reader JAWS will play a large part in meeting this goal (A4, K2, K4), as will user testing by both members of the Research Programming Hub and SENIT suite users. 

Information Security Awareness

Whilst I was in the process of updating the Moodle course Information Security Awareness, I took the opportunity to act on some feedback received about the course regarding the ThingLink resources. To make these accessible to all users a non-interactive file was created containing the same content but as text.

An on-going issue is the Flash phishing awareness game, unfortunately during my time with the Information security Group I was unable to source a more accessible alternative.  As the game is very popular with many users of the course the decision was made to retain the game as a course resource for the time being.

The inability to source an accessible alternative to the current phishing awareness game was very frustrating as I knew that we were not providing as rich as experience for all users of the course as I would have liked. (K2, K4, V1, V2)


References to the literature

Seale, J. (2014). E-learning and disability in higher education : Accessibility research and practice (Second ed.).