Which approach could you take in your role?
From my own point own view it is relatively easy to get an accessibility expert to evaluate a learning object. This is because I work closely with a colleague who is an elearning advisor for accessibility. She can also train me on how to evaluate accessibility from a number of points.
Are there any other approaches that you are familiar with?
This is not a practical option for many of the learning providers I support who would be more likely to check using checklists, guidelines and assistive technologies.
If a member of teaching staff is not comfortable with assessing resources, they may ask for support from an expert within the college. depending on the college this request may go to a member of the learning resource team, the elearning team or the learning support team. They are more likely to have access to a wider range of accessible technologies for more detailed testing and , if necessary, they could trial the resource with a range of students.
Which approaches would be appropriate for a large virtual learning environment (VLE) such as the one used for this course?
I can think of a few methods if evauating content for a large VLE. each with advantages and disadvantages.
Ensure all contents is checked by a team of assessors before being uploaded.
Advantages: thorough. Disadvantages: timely, expensive.
Give all teaching staff strict guidelines on what they can and can’t add to the VLE. With constant and random checking of material.
Advantages:less expensive, uniform content type accross all areas. Disadvantages. Strict guidelines may limit creativity and lead to “accessable but diluted”(pp82) resources.
Ensure staff are aware of the accessibility needs of learners and give them general guidelines while encouraging creativity.
Advantages: Wider range of resources Disadvantages: Less thorurgh
Ensure content can only get uploaded once it passes through an automated evaluation tool.
Advantages: cheap. Disadvantages; automated tools will not take into account common sense (i.e. ensuring invisable images have alt tabs)
Give all learners the oportunity to provide feedback resources.
Advantages: good practice. Disadvantages: can not work as the only evaluation methord.