2009 CIC IT Accessibility and Usability Working Group Annual Summer Conference Proceedings
CIC Access and Usability Survey Results Session
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>> -- you have a chance to ask questions as they come to you. First of all -- first of all one of the things I want to acknowledge is that the survey that we did was to get a sense of what sort of accessibility policies and practices there were across the CI CIT schools, or CI schools in the way of information technology. And it's -- it was a six part survey that collectively was developed by a group, by members of the CI CIT accessibility, usability team. And it was truly a group effort. And one of the things that was great about it, it was very collaborative and cooperative. And I have up here on the screen the list of the authors and the different topic areas they took responsibility for. And one of the things that's important to know is that behind each of the people who I will read off in just a moment, there was another group of people who either provided them with the information to fill out the surveyed or filled out the surveys themselves. So when you think of it in sort of a flat hierarchy. There were kind of an army of people who were involved. So for instance, Mary Beth Allen [Assumed spelling] from the University of Illinois, Urbana, Champagne, was in charge of the online library services along with Patty Bradley Deal [Assumed spelling] at the University of Michigan. Well, they were instrumental in pulling together the information as well as participating in the survey design process. But then they needed to have the cooperation of people on their campuses as well as the other campuses in getting the information together, which may have involved another three or four departments. So quite a few people were involved in putting this together.
Just for those of you who can't see the screen, the -- the people and the areas they're responsible for, Mary Beth Allen and Patty Bradley Deal for online library services survey, Alice Anderson [Assumed spelling] from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, for policies and governance. Myself for disability services. John Gunderson [Assumed spelling] who is up here with us from the University of Illinois, Urbana, Champagne, for the educational technologies survey. Margaret Lindgren [Assumed spelling] and Mary Stores for -- from right here. For alternative media and captioning. And then Ken Petri [Assumed spelling] from the Ohio State University for web site accessibility, design, evaluation, and training. I should also add that we put this survey on -- Ken's survey, on Ken's servers, and he just did a lion's share of the work in getting it together. So it was not only an accessible survey, which is off course something we're always about, but also a place for that information to be stored, entered, and retrieved.
So we had eight of the twelve schools that actually participated, which is a pretty good number for the first go-around. Indiana University, MSU -- Michigan State University -- Ohio State, Penn State, University of Illinois Champagne Urbana. University of Illinois, Chicago, University of Michigan, University of Wisconsin, Madison. We didn't have eight participants on all six surveys, but we had -- I think a minimum of six each time. Which I think was a great accomplishment for the group and for the CIC schools.
There were really three different reasons for doing this. The first was to provide a benchmark for future surveys. There's been surveys in the past done that Charmiane Cochran [Assumed spelling] from MSU has put together, which collected some very valuable information. We wanted to build on that effort and collect information about more subject areas. So the way we envision this is being something we can refer back to over time, seeing how certain yardsticks move in terms of policies and the number of people effected by them. And the key things that are important to the different schools. But we don't want to make it so redundant that we repeat it every year. So we're doing it every other year is the idea, and then we'll make some changes as time goes by to the questions that are asked. So it's kind of a living survey, if you will. Living document.
We also wanted to collect data on common areas of concern, and this is where the collaboration came in which was so helpful. Everyone certainly had their areas of interest, and that was a key aspect of how to make something like this successful, is to let the people who are interested in learning management systems or educational technologies or disability services to sort of take the lead on things, but involve everybody within the group. Because in our case, there -- I think we probably have about 50 people within the CIT -- CI CIT group officially -- 50 heads are better than one or five or ten. So it's an opportunity for people to not only specialize but also to contribute in areas where they may not have the same level of expertise. Really helps. And then the other thing we wanted to do is use this as an opportunity for us to get a better understanding of what sort of issues there are for us on campuses that were common so that we could do some future collaboration using this kind of as a launching pad.
And one of the things that came out of it was very helpful, was a proposal we put together for the CI Os, the CI CIT recently, which actually was attached to this copy of the report to them. That had to do with purchasing policies and setting up some -- some parameters, specifications for particular types of applications that the universities might use in the future. That's something that John is heading up and I think came very nicely from out of this. We expect to see more things coming out of this type of survey in the future.
So brief run down of how we approached it. Early on we had a conference last year and had subgroups breaking out of it like we have this year, to discuss what sort of things were important to us on campuses and how we can share best practices and experiences. Trying to both leverage our understanding and knowledge that we've developed individually and also to use some of the size that we have and the -- the amount of purchasing power, it you will, we have. So that as we interface with communities and vendors especially outside of the CIC, we're able to help initiate change toward greater accessibility. So this also started with the sub groups at last year's conference, which then led to particular areas of interest for putting together surveys. We all came together an developed surveys, sending things back and forth, talking monthly about them. People took ownership of particular areas they were interested in and contributed survey questions. OSU, as I mentioned, Ken has a -- uses a survey tool called survey gizmo, which is quite accessible with a little bit of tweaking, and actually sort of a best practice survey tool based upon the work that they've done at OSU. So we use that. And then the data was actually filled out on line.
So in my case, I asked our disability services people to fill out the information on line about the types of services they provide the students with disabilities. And that information was then all gathered up. And by doing it online just facilitated the whole process and much easier to pull the data out and analyze it. The data has been analyzed, and each person who was sort of a champion of their particular area put together a narrative, a summary of the content that they found, the answers that they got from the surveys. Which we then put into a more generalized report. We did some editing. I put together a cover letter, sent it around for comments, got good comments back, revised it a bit, and then we forwarded it onto the CI CIOs, who met last week and reviewed the proposal for purchasing specs and also to report [Inaudible]. So with that, I'm going turn it over to Margaret who is going to give a brief report on what she found and she and Mary found in looking at the alternative media area.
[ Inaudible comments ]
>> It was very interesting, because the adaptive technology center provides a lot of the alternative media for the I U system, so this was something that was very near and dear to our hearts who find out what was going on on other campuses. And it was -- we learned a great deal. These are the respondents. I'll let you read that on your own. And there are copies of this survey, yeah, are bound on the table in the corner. If you want them afterwards, there's Braille copies and this information will all be online about two days after the conference.
We found that all of the universities that answered the survey do provide some type of document convention service, all provide files in the .txt format, aside from that, the file types were somewhat more [Inaudible] most of the schools provided Braille documents, but not all of the respondents provided Braille. I don't believe there was a question to ask if they outsourced Braille materials. Six provided curswhile documents or winwin documents in those -- for those of you who are in disability services probably know that that's a file that's in a format that's particularly helpful for somebody who would use the curswhile 3,000 or the win-win win software because it assists in reading. Six schools convert print to PDF or convert inaccessible PDFs to accessible formats, but it's one thing that we do here and I know it happens in other libraries, people post things in ereserves or they'll but documents on encore, or the learning management system that your school uses. And they'll think that because it's in electronic format that therefore it's electronic, and that means it's accessible, sure, right? And it's like, oh, no, not a lot of the time. Five schools produce [Inaudible] or caption videos, or create tactile graphics. So that's pretty good representation of the kinds of services that can be provided. Four schools convert 20 to 50,000 pages annually, three schools convert over 50,000 pages annually. And by convert, take it from a print format and convert it to -- usually an electronic format.
Four schools have in terms of the staffing, it was interesting, five schools have full time FTE, four have two FTE, one school has only one FTE. Two schools have part-time only staff, which makes this endeavor rather challenging. All schools use part-timers as well as full time staff.
It doesn't -- that contradicts what I just said. Some form of quality control is practiced by all. It's not possible to just take a print document and turn it into an electronic document without fixing the things that still aren't right.
Publishers -- it has been found across all the schools that publishers do respond for positively if requests for accessible versions of a book or print content is asked for. Most universities use high speed scanning to do the conversions. Much attention is being paid to changes in -- electronic -- what's happening in the field of electronic text, what about kindles, what about the Hottee Trust Project, what about Google Book Search, what about digital library projects. Is there any convergence on formats that would mean that all of these electronic versions would be accessible, and there's not an answer, but a lot of discussion about those things.
Much work needs to be done to establish captioning and transcription practices and support across all of the institutions, and it would be great if there was some kind of convergence of file format types to one useable, accessible alternate format, and there is a format that lots of people talk about called Daisy, though it's not universally used every place. And some people even have some questions about whether that should be the be all and end all alternative format for accessibility.
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>> So I'll give a recap on disability services, was we found from our survey there. First of all, the -- what was great about the survey is that we had high level people participating and bring in information. So we had directors of different campus disability services office who were providing information on their services, Margaret put together information on disability services from the ATAC. And so it was great, it got nice attention within the different -- different schools. There's -- it's interesting to see when you look at, at what happens within the CIC schools in the way of persons who are receiving services and what's happening in the U.S.. Now the data that I could find about undergraduates who had disabilities and receiving services was fairly dated, from 2000. So some of this may have changed. But what we actually found when I compared things with what we found versus the U.S. as a whole was that the percentage of students reporting disabilities was significantly lower at our schools than for total U.S. undergraduates. And it's almost a factor of 2 to 1. So 6% of undergraduate students in the U.S. report disabilities according to this government survey, only 2.5% reporting across our campuses. That really covered a broad range from 1.2% at University of Illinois, Chicago, to 5.5% here at Indiana University. Indiana University had the most numbers of students reporting disabilities. The types of disabilities were a little more similar. If you look at learning disabilities, we had a slightly higher amount, like 57% reporting learning disabilities within the CIC versus 46% or the U.S., about 10 percentage points difference. Again, we had for students reporting mental or emotional challenges, 19% versus about 8% for the U.S. as a whole. Somewhat lower in terms of mobility. 9% versus 16%. Deafness, low vision, about the same, 4.5% for both us and the U.S.. And then for students with deafness, we're slightly lower, 4% versus 6%. It really varies quite a bit according to campus. In the interest of time I'm not going to read through this whole chart, but just as a top line, Indiana University had 5.5%, the highest percentage of students reporting disabilities. Whereas when you look at conative issues, OSU has the highest percentage of students reporting that issue of 68%. The highest percentage of students reporting psychological issues, University of Michigan. I don't know what that says about living in Ann Arbor. Maybe that's an indication that they were obscenely happy or something. I don't know. And then University of Illinois reported the highest percent of students with physiological issues, slightly over 50%.
The types of accommodations that were provided, and this isn't directly comparative because I think the numbers from the U.S. report are cumulative in terms of people receiving -- campuses reporting more than one type of activity, whereas the numbers we collected were more discreet, had to do with individual students receiving accommodations. But test accommodations, for instance, half of our schools -- half of the students within the CIC received test accommodations. 25% of the students within our group received counseling or tutoring. 3% received note-taking assistance. A very small percentage, 2% -- 2/10 of a percent were signing, and 16% receiving assistance with adaptive technology. Now this doesn't mean that persons with disables, only 16% actually used adaptive technology, what it means is that 16% received assistance in receiving it. So again, we have another chart here, which provides more of a breakdown for how this varies by school. And again, in the interest of time I'll just have you go to the materials themselves. But for instance, Michigan State University reported the highest percentage of their students with disabilities receiving counseling at 60%, whereas the University of Michigan reported that the highest percent of services they provided to students was 94% for test accommodations. University of Wisconsin reported that 48% of their accommodations were for note-taking, scribes or American Sign Language. The University of Illinois reported that the -- they had the highest percent of providing conversion of materials for their students of the group, 10%. And then as you can imagine, Indiana university had the highest percentage of students receiving adaptive technology support at 41%.
Now one of the things, because there's a great deal of variety here between these numbers, one of the things we're going to have to do is go back and make sure that people were interpreting the questions the same. So just as -- in terms of major findings, there's just been exponential growth in the number of students who are identifying themselves as having cognitive issues. I think this has been seen throughout the U.S., but particularly on our campuses. Approximately 2.5% across all reporting institutions reported have disabilities, which again is underreporting the number who have disabilities. Those are the people who raise their hands. The largest number of students reporting disabilities with those with learning constraints. And the most common services are testing accommodations, academic council, adaptive tech support, converting print and other media into accessible formats.
Finally, in terms of trends and implications, we expect to see students with disabilities, especially learning disorders, continue to increase. Which is a good thing. Which means more people are having access to university. And all universities within the CIC provide a broad range of services to students, again, a very good thing. Although the delivery method types of services they provide differs a great deal. The flip side of increased numbers of students with disabilities coming forward and being treated is that budgets really aren't increasing. Particularly right now. So to the extent that budgets have been constrained in the past, they're going to continue to be constrained, and stretched even further. John? Educational technologies.
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>> So with educational technology, the first question here is related to the accessibility of learning management systems and how people determine the accessibility. It was heartening to note that many of the campuses do some internal testing to verify, develop their claims of accessibility ability. So I think one of the opportunities we have may be with the CIOs is if we could work together to standardize our testing procedures or to share information so we can provide more comprehensive feedback and evaluation on accessibility features of learning management systems. The next slide here talks about the standards that are used for verifying accessibility, what's the standard we're going to hold people to in terms of accessibility. And so a number of campuses require at least Section 508 requirements Michigan State, UW, and OSU, the Illinois campuses with the passage of the Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act are held to the web accessibility or IT accessibility standards there. By and large, the Illinois Information Technology accessibility Act adopts the 508 requirements except under web accessibility, where due to previous work at the state level they had a -- some state standards for web accessible that exceed -- they're kind of a hybrid between 508 and [Inaudible] 1.0. So there's a little higher -- there's a higher standard of accessibility. And so -- so there are some standards available for people to start comparing. So this next question has to do with, well, how do the people who are making purchasing decisions learn about accessibility. Pretty much at this point is seems to be upon request or people who are making these decisions or about purchasing have to go and look for people to actually give them information about accessibility. And society good news is that they are looking for that information on many campuses.
But I think the next slide here -- now the next slide here talks about the importance of that information and actually making the purchasing decision. OSU and UIC rate it as very important. Other campuses, they're less important. University of Michigan said it really wasn't a factor. Just a personal note from Illinois, a few years ago we had an RFP for -- learning management system for a program called global campus on our university. And while we asked -- we had an opportunity during the RFP process to ask specific questions of the vendors, because they were all coming in to do presentations. We did submit specific questions. It was -- it was interesting to note that at the most when the vendors came in to respond to those questions, one didn't even have anything in their presentation about accessibility. One vend your had a bullet about it, and I think another vendor had actually a whole Power Point slide on accessibility. They devoted a whole slide to it. And when I asked them to address the specific accessibility questions some of the vendors actually got hostile. They said, well, you know, why are you asking me these questions. I mean, they had these questions two weeks ahead of time. So it wasn't like I just popped up and said, hey, I'm going get these guys on accessibility. So it's interesting to note that, you know, I think we need to have vendors put more pressure on vendors to provide more specific information. We need that administrative support in seeing -- you know, so even in our process after we evaluated the vendors we really -- accessibility really didn't become a factor because none of the companies had addressed what we wanted for accessibility. So in terms of saying, okay, Product A versus Product B was better, we really couldn't say that. So it really became a non-factor in the decision, even -- so with me, it was hard to judge, well, how important is it if nobody is doing what we want. So I think that was just an anecdotal stuff on recent RFP. I think one good thing is that people are starting to include accessibility in instructor training. At the University of Illinois and MSU all instructor training has some portion of accessibility. Other campuses, there's at least an option for instructors who want to learn about accessibility, but you know, I think as we saw in the presented, Dr. Rosenberg -- Dr. Rosenbaum -- is that not very many people are interested in taking a course that's just on accessibility. And so I think the integration into all training is an important goal. And helping support instructors in creating accessibility content is where we need to be going.
So where is this training coming from? It's -- a lot of it I think was -- some of these are a lot of acronyms, but I believe most of the training is being integrated into the actual people doing the training in general. I know in our campus it's integrated in by some of our instructional design people. So accessibility policies related to instructional material. It seems that that's a big area that we need to improve. Michigan State was the only one that had a recommendation, and I believe you were looking at the least the syllabi being accessible and making that a requirement. UW Madison, the same standards for instructional materials. Now it's interesting on our campus, because one of my strategies for filling out the survey on our campus was I sent it to the people who do these things rather than just fill it out myself or have my staff. So it was interesting to me when it came back that UIC has no policy because all instructional materials are covered under the Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act. So you know, it just shows where we are. It was interesting, [Inaudible] and I did a workshop a few months ago for some of our -- our what's called sites, campus instructional technology -- campus information technology, kind of like the UI administration. And I just asked the people who came to the workshop, how many people here have heard of the Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act. I think there were like 15 or 20 people there. About 3 raised their hand. So that was telling me, even though we had this act and we had a lot of things going on, on campus, administrators still aren't telling their staff that this is even a requirement, that they need to pay attention to this stuff. And somebody was even at the meeting who we know did a lot of work on accessibility. He worked on something called the portal project. We worked with him a lot. He hadn't even heard of the Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act. So communication and again getting administrators' support for this, to communicate this to the managers and the administrators I think continues to be a -- an issue that we'll face.
So responsibility for ensuring instructional accessibility. I think here what we found is it still falls upon disability services. Because when things breakdown, things aren't accessible, disability services are picking up the pieces and trying to figure out how to get the student through the class and get the text conversion, whatever needs to be done, to get them through the class. And that's the traditional role of disability service providers on campuses, but that still seems to be the main model. And these are just some additional comments. I don't think there was any clear things, so -- I think that was the last slide. Yeah. Library [Inaudible] --
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>> I'm pinch-hitting for Patty and for Alice in this, who were unable to be at the meeting. So had a large number of people who participated in this part of the survey. We had eight schools respond, a large number of all. So there's four primary areas that they looked into.
The first was electronic reserves. And the purpose was to gauge whether electronic reserves had been evaluated for accessibility and whether they met campus accessibility guidelines. And what they found from the survey is that the majority of libraries either hadn't evaluated their ereserve systems for accessibility, or had evaluated them and were aware that they didn't meet accessibility guidelines. And this is of course a third party issue for the most part, because most of these are sources from outside vendors or data systems. In terms of providing online resources for learning support.
The survey also sought to determine whether various online services had been evaluated for accessibility and whether they met guidelines. And what they found is that half the libraries had evaluated library learning support resources for accessibility -- and again, this is online support for students. But only one library reported that it met all university accessibility requirements. The other half of the group said that resources had not been evaluated or there weren't accessibility requirements for that. The news is a little better for things like the online catalogs at the libraries, where six of the eight libraries reported that their online catalogs had been evaluated for accessibility and met some accessibility guidelines. Two said that they did not have such guidelines. And then in terms of online databases, more than half of the libraries reported that some databases had been evaluated. And one reported that most of the databases evaluated did not meet any of the university accessibility requirements. So that it's kind of the -- kind of the Holy Grail to get the whole library data system, if you will, resources system, accessible. And typically, the areas that libraries have the most control over are the areas that are most accessible at this point.
All eight libraries reported that they provide assistance to people with disabilities in a number of important ways. Services include helping to perform searchs, helping to retrieve material, provide accessible versions of print and other material. Some offer adjustable work stations with assistive technologies installed. Only one library, however, reported that it provides assistive technologies on most library work stations. So in other words they tend to be entities of themselves, rather than through the whole system.
Trends and implications. All types of accomodation aren't offered through the library, but accommodations are provided elsewhere on campus if they're not provided at the library. Libraries and universities currently in the process of evaluating and improving the accessibility of what's offered electronically, and they're aware of the need for continued assessment of use patterns and use of services. So it's not an educational effort, it more has to do with resources and third party products. Everyone can benefit if more evaluation is done, more standards and guidelines are developed, and if vendors and developers are held to stricter standards. So it's making sure that the whole food chain is involved where -- and does what they need to do.
Okay, in terms of policy and governments, I guess I'm also pinch-hitting this during our -- due to budget constraints. And I'm not as familiar with these files, I have to say. So over 70% of campuses do have a formal web or software policy. Design development of web sites at the university, all of them have some formal web or software policy. Design, development by outside vendors, evaluation of web sites designed and developed at the university. About half do. Design and development of software, university less 25%, design and development of software by outside vendors, purchase of software from outside vendors. So again as you move outside of the university the policies tend to peter out a bit. Types of issues that were addressed, having to do with the Americans With Disabilities Act over 2006, 2007.
Physical environment accommodations. Everyone dealt with those. University policy issues, everyone. Web accessibility, everyone. Some other issues that came up, public events, campus transportation and employment, AVA, web site. Issues that are anticipated for the next two years are reviewing AVA position and reporting structure, implementing a policy on web accessibility. These are for individual campuses. Updating web accessibility policy to address new media, increasing awareness and compliance with the Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act as John just mentioned, and reviewing the AVA policy to comply with recent AVA amendments. So while CIC campuses have AVA officers and policies requiring web sites be accessibility, it's not clear, the chicken or the egg, whether the AVA positions or the policies themselves are the motivating force behind creating accessible web sites, or if the presence of either has increased the quantity of accessible sites. But as we're all aware of, there seems to be movement in the direction of greater accessibility and awareness of the need for accessibility, which is all for the good.
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>> Okay, a list of respondents. There were eight -- six, one, two, three, four -- eight -- of twelve responded to the web site accessibility part of the survey. We know that most web design is done in house across the universities. Only one campus reported that there was any significant level of outsourcing. Even so, the web design tends to not be centralized, most of it's done kind of ad hoc and it tends to be dependent on unit and departmental resources. And I would guess in the survey was done now, even, this would have changed. It would certainly change as far as OSU's response to the answer. There's been a big trend at OSU and other campuses I talked to, to move toward content management systems, and that has been to -- a tendency to centralize design a little bit more. By January 2009 -- so actually after the survey has been submitted, because one of the campuses said they were instituting a policy, it appears that now there's six of eight campuses that have web accessibility policy. All of them base their policies on 508 or [Inaudible] Version 1, with the exception of UIUC and Chicago, I'm assuming. Chicago also? Yeah. Anybody in Illinois. And they're under the Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act. Only one policy covered desk top software. Seems to be a hole.
All cover HTML. Half cover Flash and PDF, and there's 67% that cover captioning. More than 60% have no coordinated monitoring, and which I thought was interesting. The ones that do, either to spidering audits, a number of the campuses use FAE, and it sounds like more are starting to use FAE for that. And some of them do them according to traffic. So the most traffic sites are the ones that are evaluated most frequently. Looks like for coordinated effort on application accessibility, so not just web site accessibility but application accessibility, the ones that have gotten the focus on learning management systems. A lot of that is I think the result of work that has been done by UIUC with their collaborative -- their collaboration efforts. And then other services, web mail and library data bases tend to get looked at most frequently. And I've noticed that what's been happening is a lot of interest in conferencing systems, on line conferencing and elearning systems. So that's probably an area that's getting more focus currently. People use FAE very frequently, one campus -- one campus using lift machine, which is produced by Usable Net, which is the Nielsen Norman Group [Assumed spelling]. There's little support across campuses for browser-based tools, but everybody that I've ever talked to that does this sort of evaluation using browser-based tools. Just they're not supported centrally. One campus does do some outsourced usability evaluation, accessibility evaluation. Only one campus ensures accessibility and all main stream web training. And I'm not exactly sure how that campus pulls that off, but that's a pretty big achievement. All teach some number of courses or workshops. The -- there seems to be very little accessibility training available for Flash and probably even less for Silver Light.
Is anybody doing any Silver Light accessibility training? Does everybody know anything about accessibility on Silver Light? Okay.
Almost all do HTML and PDF, which is good. And one of the whole -- one of the problems with the survey is we weren't able to judge how much of this training was focused at instructors putting content in content management systems or learning management systems. And that's something I imagine will be revised when the survey goes out again. Only one campus has more than three full time employees dedicated to accessibility. A third of the campuses have no full time employees that are able to spend more than 50% of their time on accessibility -- web accessibility at least.
Okay, so the general trends and implications. It seemed in all the surveys -- the responses that we got back, there's very broad concern for web accessibility. You saw in some of the other results that there are a number of campus committees. Most of the responding schools have campus committees that handle these issues and discuss these issues. And so there is lots of good will toward it. And there's been good adoption of policies. There's been -- training is wide-spread, but our survey didn't probe deeply enough to determine how the -- who the training targets. So is it targeting development professionals who are doing, you know, back end work and front end UI work, or is it actually people who are producing most of the content. You know, faculty, instructors, and staff people. Most campuses do not have adequate resources for coordinated monitoring of web space for accessibility, and so there's been a lot of turn toward self reporting, which I think is probably wise. And there's a little dedicate staffing, and this is especially true and especially significant given the size of a lot of the reporting universities.
>> Okay, just three points and then I'd like to open it up to questions you might have. First of all, as you've seen from our conversations up here and the panel and also this review that CIC institutions are broadening their accessibility efforts. And I think that there's a movement, if you will, from the model where it has been very student-specific in accommodations to a more generalized approach. But what's important is that this is a compliment to rather than a replacement for the individual student support. There will always be a need for individual accommodations. Because as you know, disabilities are -- can be very complex. It seems that the schools are at different stages but are increasingly congruent in the types of issues that they have and development of policies and implementations of support toward creating more generalized approach to accessibility. And things have moved from it seems from a should do to a must do orientation, which I think is all to the good. And then as you've heard too, we're facing, as institutions, very similar challenges. What do you do about third party software, what do you do about third party systems and their accessibility. Once you get some policies in place versus web sites being accessibility, what do you do about course materials, what do you do about moving beyond HTML, which is sort of the easy thing to address, multimedia. How do we accomplish all these things on limited budgets. And with that, I'd like to open it up to questions you may have.
>> We have been known to call on people.
[ Laughter ]
>> Is there among some of the other CIC people on campus, is there some other thing that you would like to bring up that we didn't cover from the surveys that you think might be appropriate? Yes, [Inaudible] --
[ Inaudible audience comment ]
>> Good question. Two things, really. The survey has been forwarded to the CIOs of the CIC institutions, and they received the survey last week and discussed the proposal that we had, which was to develop some specific criteria for evaluating applications. And rather than a very general policy for accessibility on third party applications, the idea is to define what things are important in things like calendaring systems, eventually learning management systems, e-mail systems, so that there can be some structure around which the decisions of purchasing and the policies can be made. John mentioned that -- was it John are was it at OSU -- which school mentioned that, this is terrible. That one of their CIOs came back and is taking charge of that. I guess it was -- CIC -- it was at the University of Illinois, Chicago.
[ Inaudible audience comments ]
>> -- the survey and the request, and so she has been charged from the CIO group to work with our group to refine what the CIOs would like to see. So I think it's a first step, I think -- we didn't have enough time to discuss exactly what the CIOs wanted, but she's -- wants to meet soon to talk about that and we'll share that, her comments with the group and probably discuss it at an up coming meeting, how we can respond to the specific things the CIOs were hoping to get.
>> I heard back from -- from our CIO, although that's not his title -- Dave Geff, who said that there was interest in it. Like John said, one of the things they want to do is they want us -- they want to work with us to help understand how it might be implemented because -- and that's actually one of the key things within John's proposal was that there be a cooperative endeavor, kind of a working group where there would be IT people, purchasing people, and the CI CIT accessibility and useable campus representatives all working together to formulate a structure and approach that would work, practically speaking, on those campuses. So --
>> We've heard back at OSU from -- hello?
>> We heard back from our CIO as well, and there two things that were in the proposal that she's a little bit -- she's got some reservations about. One is that the proposal uses the language of development of purchasing requirements. And she did not like the word requirements. And I don't know if she prefers recommendations or what. So that's one thing that -- and I imagine she's probably not alone in that. The other bit I forgotten. What was it. I can't remember the other thing. We -- the upshot is we have gotten some positive response. And she's -- oh, I know what it was. People on each of the campuses need to dedicate personnel within purchasing and within IT to this effort. And that's going to be something that's going to need to be negotiated. Currently, what we're thinking about is if the -- if the current application under review is in learning management system, then people responsible for learning management systems would be the people involved in that. So rather than designating a single individual to handle all different applications that there would be rotating people on the committees developing requirements according to their area of expertise. And so those are the two things that we heard so far.
[ Inaudible audience comment ]
>> Just to make sure that it was picked up by the microphones. What [Inaudible] was saying is that the accessibility, for lack of a better term, criteria would become a main stream part of the specifications and not segmented off to the side and easily overlooked or put in a low priority. Is that --
>> I think another reason that she's balking on the term requirements is that -- it's a little -- it's a little -- it's a little frightening because there's not a huge depth of knowledge about accessibility within the CIO group, as far as I am aware. I think they know the out lines of it. But I think they -- the perception is it's probably more difficult than it in fact is to achieve. And so that may be another reason that they're bristling against that particular term.
[ Inaudible audience comment ]
>> Well, if we could just clarify a little bit. What I can see the CIO probably saw the word requirement and that's the only word they probably read. You know, but the original proposal to them was to develop requirements that could optionally be used by campuses. We weren't asking the CIOs to develop these requirements and implement them, we were just asking them to bring these people together from these various groups. And I think the model that Ken talked about is we want the specialty people. We want to educate IT people and the learning management system, what are the accessibility features of learning management, what are the accessibility features in a web mail application. What are the accessibility features in a calendaring system. And for us to define those and create requirements and the real I think strength of this approach is that one, the companies now know what we're looking for, for accessibility. Because right now they're just guessing. They read the same accessibility requirements say, okay, well, here's the same general requirements. Okay well, this, I guess we're doing the keyboard here, we can tab 350 times and get to that menu item. So I guess we satisfied the keyboard support question there. And so it's also to give guidance to companies to tell them, okay, this is what we want. And I think when you can tell people more specifically what you're looking for in terms of -- it's a lot easier to work with them, rather than just saying we want this thing to be accessible, please make it accessible. You know, that's a broad question. And so that's another part. Also within the purchasing process itself, the people making the purchasing decisions are the people in those specific IT departments. The only job of the purchasing people is to make sure that they, you know, all of the purchasing requirements by law are satisfied to collect information, and if we have specific questions companies have to respond to, that information is now available to the people making the purchasing decision. If they satisfy this requirement, you know, at least there's some information there now to compare products in terms of a particular feature. Do they have this feature or not. Hopefully, it's fairly easy to be testable so that people don't have to spend a lot of time testing it. So -- and again, the proposal was that, you know, once the requirements are made it's up to individual campuses to decide whether they actually want to include them in an RFP or not. So that needs, I think, some clarification. So we weren't asking the CIOs, okay, we're going to develop a requirement and you have to use it. So --
>> Any other questions or comments? Okay, Margaret?
>> Thank you [Inaudible] -- we're now going to have lunch in what I think is one of the most beautiful rooms in the campus, it's called the Tutor Room, and Julie, is that on this floor? Okay, so you will leave here and walk down the hallways --
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