Technology provides a platform for creating engaging and interactive eLearning courses, improving people’s learning. However, learners with disabilities tend to feel distant from those who are not disabled. Although eLearning is efficient for driving better results, its basics must accommodate all learners. Accessibility solutions play a crucial role in equalizing the ground for all learners. If you are a content creator or learning management system manager, there are best practices to consider when developing eLearning courses. Here are some guidelines you should know.
What are Accessibility Solutions
Accessibility solutions in learning mean designing content that caters to all learners, including those with learning, physical, auditory and visual disabilities. However, a small company creating its first eLearning course or an expert learning and development manager may not know about the accessibility of content.
For example, if a learner logs into the learning management system and goes through a course, there are questions they must answer. However, if the learner suffers from hearing loss, they will not understand the content. Even if they are visually impaired, they may not fully engage with their content.
These scenarios clearly explain why it is considerable to build accessible eLearning content.
Why are Accessibility Solutions Crucial for Learning?
1. Better Learning Experience for Everyone
Accessibility solutions improve learning for learners with physical disabilities and all learners in general. By upscaling accessibility solutions, all users can seamlessly understand, perceive, navigate and interact with online content. Your content should consider accessibility for someone with poor internet connections or using obsolete computer hardware.
2. Disability Is More Prevalent
There are different forms of disability auditory, visual, speech-related, physical, learning, cognitive and neurological. Furthermore, your audience dealing with aging effects and physical injury may also need accessibility. Therefore, during the development of learning and development strategies, consider these diverse needs to ensure inclusivity for everyone. For example, adding a screen reader to read out information to visually impaired learners.
How do you make a Learning Platform Accessible?
Today, web accessibility is easy to achieve with the available LMSs. These solutions take accessibility seriously and will incorporate best practices. In addition, training administrators must understand the common challenges learners with disabilities face in accessing learning content. For effective implementation, planning steps should take an inclusive approach.
Accessibility Solutions Best Practices
Using accessibility solutions to create eLearning content must follow guidelines and best practices. These international guidelines act as a checklist for ensuring content is accessible for learners with disabilities.
WCAG 2.0 Principles and Guidelines
The W3C designed web accessibility standards based on four core principles. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) explain that content should be;
• Perceivable – Users must identify content elements using at least one of their senses
• Operable – Users must be capable of using controls, navigation options, buttons, and interactive elements on a web interface
• Understandable – Users must understand information and how to operate the digital interface
• Robust – Digital content should be robust enough for various users to interpret.
Following these steps ensures that educators and administrators can realize the current state of affairs and develop solutions.
Great content publishing platforms have all the resources to make eLearning accessible. Therefore, content creation, organization, and formatting should consider these best practices.
1. Create Multiple Format Content
A text alternative must accompany all content that is not in the text. Therefore;
• Images with ‘Alt tags’ must effectively describe the image representation
• Video content must include captions with the audio details
• Audio content must have transcripts
• All forms must have labels
All other visual multimedia must provide descriptions for readers to understand the context.
2. Organize and Structure Content for Clarity
The web page display does not entirely capture the organization and structure of the content in the HTML markup. This is because screen readers will not read the page the web browser presents visually. Although basic HTML skills are essential, your LMS’s formatting tools will create a worthwhile markup. Here are ways to do it.
• Use appropriate styles to organize the content headings
• Consider using bulleted and numbered lists to avoid using hyphens
• Avoid using text colors or highlights for text to standout
As you implement HTML markups, visual styling may not be as necessary because the content is clear and understandable for users with learning disabilities.
3. Ensure Consistency in Content and Navigation
Accessing a new interface is always challenging, even for learners with abilities. Maximizing content and navigation consistency ensure content is well organized and displayed. The learning curve is, therefore, manageable, improving accessibility for everyone. Consider giving users a platform tour or adding navigation tools to set them on the right path.
So far, we can agree that accessibility solutions are imperative to engage and educate learners effectively. While these best practices deliver better results, there is a need to engage learners with disabilities to understand their challenges. You can implement accessibility on your digital platforms to scale content delivery and audience reach.
Innovation gives a stage to making connecting with and intuitive eLearning courses, working on individuals’ learning. Nonetheless, students with incapacities will quite often feel far off from the individuals who are not debilitated. Despite the fact that eLearning is productive for driving improved results, its rudiments should oblige all students. Openness arrangements assume a urgent part in balancing the ground for all students. On the off chance that you are a substance maker or learning the board framework director, there are best practices to consider while creating eLearning courses. Here are a few rules you ought to be aware. Availability arrangements in learning mean planning content that takes care of all students, incorporating those with learning, physical, hear-able and visual handicaps. Be that as it may, a little organization making its most memorable eLearning course or a specialist learning and improvement director may not be aware of the openness of content. For instance, in the event that a student signs into the learning the board framework and goes through a course, there are questions they should respond to. Nonetheless, on the off chance that the student experiences hearing misfortune, they won’t grasp the substance. Regardless of whether they are outwardly disabled, they may not completely draw in with their substance. These situations obviously make sense of why it is considered to construct available eLearning content. Availability arrangements further develop learning for students with actual handicaps and all students overall. By upscaling openness arrangements, all clients can flawlessly comprehend, see, explore and associate with online substance. Your substance ought to think about availability for somebody with unfortunate web associations or utilizing outdated PC equipment.