Re: PDF accessibility guidelines. WAS: Re: PDF's and Signatures

To sum up Rachel,

First I agree with John. It is not a binary decision, and PDF is no
bogyman. An academic coordinator should keep that in mind.  The key factors
to consider are to:

1. Provide equally effective access to each student, and define that
concept carefully so you can defend it if you are investigated by the
Office for Civil Rights.
2. Minimize accommodation costs. In most cases PDF creates more danger than
documents created in the next step.
3. Educate faculty to the need to preparing accessible content.  Teaching
accessible use of their word processor is most effective.
4. Often faculty will need to reference off site PDF as part of their
content.  In these cases the selection should be made in sufficient time to
enable preparation of reasonable accommodation

At my university we offer about 5000+ classes per semester.  Each class
averages 15 pages of class administrative handouts (syllabi, tests,
homework etc.). I used to hand out about 35 pages of class notes or more.
So, that means about 50x5000 pages of material.  Now, we have about 100
students with print disabilities. Each takes 3 classes.  That is 300.  Now,
300/5000=3/50 is the fraction of classes that have students with print
disabilities.   So, we have about 50*5000*(3/50) = 15000  pages of
information in many different formats we must address in order to create
equally effective access.  That is not counting textbooks.  You can see the
relationship between accessibility and the operating budget of a disabled
student services center.


On Fri, Jan 23, 2015 at 8:08 PM, <> wrote:

> On Fri, 23 Jan 2015, John Foliot wrote:
> wrote:
>>> one reason I just say "avoid pdf" to these groups.
>> ...and if they can, that is not wrong advice. However there are times when
>> that advice is not feasible, for any number of reasons. There, spending
>> the
>> time (if that effort is taken and appreciated) is the answer. Bottom line
>> is
>> that there is no single answer to this conundrum, and we must remain open
>> to
>> that line of thought.
> in my own church and their website the only thing not accessible (after
> some training)was the monthly newsletter, which drove me nuts because the
> newsletter was typed up on a word processing software (such as Word) and
> then converted to pdf then scanned onto the website.  finally convinced
> them to just upload the document from the wordprocessessing output.
> they finally got it.
> but this is so common it is hard to understand why folks want to work so
> much harder.
> Bob

Received on Saturday, 24 January 2015 06:31:53 UTC