National AccessAbility Week: Introducing Accessibility in 2 Minutes

Happy National AccessAbility Week from the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Working Group! 

Vector illustration of two people reading books and one person on a laptop with speech bubbles stating “hello” and “bonjour”. They are sitting on large books with a computer screen and graduation cap in the background.
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National AccessAbility Week (NAAW) (May 30th – June 5th, 2021) is an opportunity to celebrate the valuable contributions of Canadians with disabilities and to recognize the efforts of individuals, communities, and workplaces that are actively working to remove barriers to accessibility and inclusion. 

One way the BC government is working to reduce accessibility barriers and enable greater inclusion of all British Columbians is the recently introduced Accessible BC Act. When this legislation is passed, a series of accessibility standards will be developed, to be implemented over the next decade. These standards will guide what organizations will need to do to make their services accessible, and will impact many areas of daily life and activities in BC, including education. For a quick overview of what this process will look like, the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction has released an infographic (opens PDF), as well as some proposed timelines (opens PDF) for the development and deployment of the accessibility standards. 

We don’t yet know the specifics of exactly how the Accessible BC Act will impact post secondary education, but we do know there are many things everyone can do right away to help make their course materials, classes, meetings, and interactions with all members of the Langara community more accessible. In order to make this easier, every month the UDL Working Group will be publishing an “Accessibility in two minutes” tip in the Langara Post. These short tips will provide quick and practical advice for everyone on topics including how to make documents, presentations, LMS content, and communications more accessible, collaborating with Accessibility Services to better support students, how UDL intersects with accessibility and academic accommodations, and how to maximize the accessibility features of the educational technologies you are using. We hope these tips will be helpful as we all move toward improving accessibility at Langara! 

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