Accessibility, Accommodations & Uniqueness 2

Cont’d from an earlier post…

2. We need to be more aware of how to accommodate learners who are
different in our instruction. It starts with cultivating an open
mindset and becoming informed.

This is not a new idea but bears repetition because I encounter people who don’t have that awareness.

I know that some people complain about
the cost and labor of providing accommodations. It is a real issue that
we have to work on. It involves changing some national and institutional policies so
that support for access can be implemented more quickly. There is a lot of work to do to create awareness of what a
marginalized group experiences so that it becomes acknowledged by the
majority. Switch roles for a day and try to understand what it is like
to figure out the world visually instead of aurally, to not have access to peripheral sounds that aid layers to understanding.

Accessibility
happens when the institution, the instructor and the individual
requiring accommodations work together to make it happen. The learner
must learn to ask, and persist in asking, and the
institution/department/instructor must listen to facilitate that
support.

In online learning, knowledge about assistive
technologies and how to deliver information through new technologies to
users from different groups must be pushed out to all instructors who
teach in that medium. Whether they get pulled in is something for
program evaluation. Information must be delivered to all users in
timely and effective ways, regardless of the medium of instruction. How
to support interactions among all users is another must-know
information piece. In instructional-design (ID) speak, these are
knowledge interventions that must occur.

How do we IDs design these interventions and what do they look like? That is content for a possible future posting. 🙂

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