Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Realizing the Promise: Making Blended and Online Learning Accessible to All Learners -- a Leadership Webinar from iNACOL

Here's an opportunity to hear some information about accessibility in a free webinar from iNACOL September 9

Blended and online learning can provide the least restrictive, most tailored educational environment for students with disabilities. However, new learning models must be designed with all learners in mind to realize that promise. Join iNACOL for a conversation with national experts on making blended and online learning accessible to students with disabilities. From course access quality reviews, to assessment policies, to new learning model design and implementation, this webinar will be of value to both policymakers and educators.

Raymond Rose, author of the iNACOL report Access and Equity for All Learners in Blended and Online Education and Lindsay Jones, Director of Public Policy & Advocacy, and Meghan Casey, Policy Research & Advocacy Associate at the National Center for Learning Disabilities, will share recommendations on meeting the needs of students with disabilities in personalized learning and in blended and online education. Maria Worthen, Vice President for Federal and State Policy at iNACOL will moderate the webinar.
  • Raymond Rose, Chair, Rose & Smith Associates
  • Lindsay Jones, Director of Public Policy & Advocacy, National Center for Learning Disabilities
  • Meghan Casey, Policy Research & Advocacy Associate, National Center for Learning Disabilities
  • Maria Worthen, Vice President for Federal and State Policy, iNACOL

September 9, 2015, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EST 
 Webinar registration:

Monday, August 17, 2015

I need a visual...

I'm presenting at the national Quality Matters conference in November.  I got this message from the conference organizer:
We are asking people to select the sessions that they plan they to attend as they register for the 7th Annual QM Conference.

It appears that your session "It's All In the Design -- The Importance of Making Courses Legally Accessible" is popular.  Congratulations on choosing a topic that really interests people who are registering!

We encourage you to let your network know you are presenting.  Spread the word!

We’d also like to highlight your session in communications leading up to the conference.  Please put some thought into:
  1. The top three things people will be exposed to in your session
  2. The two main take-aways you hope participants gain
  3. A single visual you would like people to see that connects to your session

Send these to me and we’ll toot your horn.
Great!  Love it!  And they've already asked permission to webcast the session too.

So, first thoughts about my responses to the first two:

Top 3 Things.
Who:  The recent OCR non-compliance findings for online courses.
What: The common problems found by OCR
Where: The recommendations for making courses accessible

2 Main Take-aways
Require online courses to meet quality standards for accessibility
It's easier to build accessibility into the course when it's being built than to try to retrofit it.

I'm not sure about the single visual though.  I could do a graphic of a web page accessibility report. like this.  But that might imply I was going to do more with the tool than just show the link and what it can do in providing a quick analysis of a web page.

Other ideas for a graphic or for reworking of the other items?

Monday, August 03, 2015

Speaks VOLumes Conference Recordings Still Available.

One of the nice things the folks at TxVSN do as part of the speaks VOLumes conference is record and publish every session.  And since the sessions are live captioned and sometimes (when requested) signed as well, these are great professional development opportunities.

So, not only is the conference online and accessible, it's also FREE!  How can you beat that?

I might be considered a bit bias because I've done the conference now two years and this year not only had a keynote presentation, but was also the moderator (though I prefer the term provocateur) for what I humbly thought was one of the best panel sessions I've been a part of.  The SuperHero Leadership Panel featured: Dr. Nelson Coulter, former Superintendent of Guthrie CSD, Guthrie, Texas. Mark Evans Program Coordinator for Digital Distance and Online Learning for Klein ISD, Klein, Texas, and Dr. R. Jefferson George, Senior Lecturer for the Educational Leadership program at the University of North Texas.

The thing I heard that confirms my assessment, was that it should have been a 120 rather than a 60 minute session.  So, if you're interested in ed leadership, especially in the online world, go through the registration process to get an account for the conference, and spend some time watching and listening to some very informative sessions.