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Teaching Accessibility


Accessibility is not just something we do for our students but also what we teach our students.

Accessibility is an important part of all document design. Creating accessibility documents for users across the ability section aligns with the core principles of professional writing, which means it should have a place in our classrooms. The following list is not exhaustive but meant to help you consider how you can incorporate accessibility into the classroom as part of effective practices.


  • Teach students to use style headings on digital composition projects (an example of wording from an assignment description: “Tag your title and headings in your text. To do this in MS Word, use the Styles menu to mark up the title, headings, captions, body text, etc.)
  • Teach students to use alt text and/or descriptive text of images attached to projects
  • Teach students to use descriptive labels for links on digital projects and emails
  • Teach students to add closed captioning to video projects
  • Teach students to consider the color contrast within documents, slides, and graphs
  • Teach students to use elements beyond color to denote information lines in graphs and charts
  • Teach students to use verbal descriptions of their images during presentations
  • Teach students to face their audience when speaking
  • Teach students to consider how they are asking their audience to access the information- are they assuming their audience can use their ears, eyes, and hands – their bodies -in a specific way? Teach students to ask: What are the functional demands of my design?
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