Organizing your course accessibly

All people learn differently. Organizing your course in a way that supports the learning needs and styles of all users can be a difficult task. Your learning materials need to engage, educate, evaluate and accommodate people effectively.

In this topic we discuss a number of design decisions you can make to help ensure your course is accessible to all users.

  1. Set clear course expectations
  2. Make time limits and deadlines flexible
  3. Provide alternative learning materials

Set clear course expectations

When you set up an online course it is important to remember that for many students it marks a big change from a traditional classroom. This can be challenging for students with physical or learning disabilities as they can feel disconnected from their instructor and other support systems.

Furthermore, Learning Environment provides course designers a lot of flexibility in how they set up and organize their course materials. Although there are many benefits to this flexibility, it can be daunting for students with learning disabilities and students who rely on assistive technologies to navigate pages to find all of your course materials and assignments.

There are some easy design decisions you can make that will help all students use your online course effectively:

Back to top

Make time limits and deadlines flexible

Many course designers create course materials that put users with learning and physical disabilities at a disadvantage without intending to. Usually disadvantages result from users not having enough time to complete tasks or not having appropriately designed resources.

Here are a few things to consider when organizing course materials in a time-sensitive manner:

Back to top

Provide alternative learning materials

One of the most effective course design decisions you can make to improve student engagement is to offer course materials and assignments that appeal to more than one sense. For example, the same material or assignment can have an audio, video and text component. This type of redundancy helps engage students with different learning types, reinforces important concepts, and helps ensure that users with physical disabilities can access content in a suitable format.

Back to top

See also

 

Desire2Learn Help | About Learning Environment
© 1999-2012 Desire2Learn Incorporated. All rights reserved.