Whether you have a quick question, need in-depth help, or just want to know where to start, please drop in, we are happy to assist. If this time doesn't work for you, contact Maureen.Bourbeau@unh.edu to schedule training or request an individual review of your course materials.
SAS focuses our efforts toward accessibility. This effort allows a broad continuum of users with/without disabilities to access programs, course materials, activities, and services. Individuals with varied needs may participate outright. (i.e. No one is restricted from using curb cuts and automatic door openers, yet it meets the needs of individuals whose mobility may be affected such as a person using a wheelchair.) Alternately, accommodations are provided to address that which is inaccessible. Accommodations generally are meant to address issues of inaccessibility for individuals with disabilities, (such accommodations may also meet the needs of others, e.g., temporary disabilities). The content that follows is intended to promote accessibility for diverse learners with or without disabilities or accommodation letters.
Re: Instructional Materials, SAS will notify faculty each semester of known students enrolled in identified courses where accessibility needs exist. This notification will occur after the enrollment process for each semester.
Accommodation letters are sent by students and are to address classroom logistics that may affect access/performance due to a disability. These letters have no deadline but have no expectations for retroactive implementation.
It lets the students know you are aware of the accommodations process and they should feel comfortable approaching you to discuss their specific accommodation letter in detail as needed.
If the student has not yet connected with SAS, this statement provides necessary information on who to contact if they feel they may need accommodation services.
Make Textbook and Required Reading information available via courses.unh.edu:
Many students registered with SAS require print materials in a digital format to be used with Assistive Technology such as screen readers and text-to-speech software. As part of their accommodations, students and/or SAS will need to acquire a digital alternative to the printed books. Making your textbook information available as early as possible via the "courses.unh.edu" portal will facilitate this process. SAS works with the publishers to request the e-text, typically in a searchable PDF format for the student. (Note: The student is still required to purchase a copy of the printed book, or other e-book format before SAS can provide the PDF from the publisher.) When the book is not available digitally from the publisher, SAS will need to cut/scan the student's print copy and convert it to searchable text. This can be a time-consuming process, so the more advance notice we have, the better we can manage our workload.
SAS recommends including the following details for clarification:
NO TEXTBOOK will be required
Reading materials will be made available via CANVAS or other known sources such as OpenStax, etc.
If multiple books will be required, list them in the order they will be used in the course
Add Syllabus or other course details not included in the course description
Provide non-textbook required reading materials in a digital format:
Why does this matter?
Reading continues to be the primary method students are expected to utilize when accessing new information and course materials in the learning environment. Most often, these reading materials are provided in a hard copy printed format.
However, there are many disabilities that interfere with reading standard “print” materials.
What is a Print Disability?
Functional definition, "A condition related to blindness, visual impairment, specific learning disability or other physical condition in which the student needs an alternative or specialized format (i.e., Braille, Large Print, Audio, Digital text) in order to access and gain information from conventional printed materials." (Maine AIM Community of Practice)
Multiple forms of "READING" include:
“Eye reading”—scanning words on the printed page or on-screen (may require magnification)
“Finger reading” – braille, tactile access to words on the page.
How Disability impacts the Reading Process:
Blind-- requires using a screen reader, or braille.
Low vision – requires magnification and/or manipulation of fonts and display settings
Color blindness, Sensitivity to light --requires customization display settings
Physical —may not have the mobility and dexterity to handle books or manipulate pages.
Learning/ dyslexia/ attention –each has an impact on the rate of reading, fluency, and comprehension.
What is "digital text"?
Digital text is often referred to as “Alternate Format or e-Text”
When text is digital, the end-user can control its format to meet his/her individual reading needs with a variety of assistive technologies or device settings. (This supports the CAST UDL -Universal Design for Learningprinciple of “multiple means of representation”.
Quick Test -- try "selecting text" from within your PDF to copy/paste into another document.
If the PDF is only an image of the text, you will see a blue box in the middle of your paragraph.
If the PDF is searchable, you will see it capture all the text as shown above.
Good news:There are many natively digital options available for print materials.
e-books (from the library or publisher sources)
Full-text PDF's from digital databases
Online digital journal articles
"Scanned" or image-only PDF’s posted to Canvas (i.e. scanned article or book chapter) can be very problematic if the image quality is poor and the text has not been “recognized” to make the document searchable using (OCR—Optical Character Recognition) software.
How do I make my print materials accessible?
1. Search the UNH Library for full-text PDF via online databases or ProQuest e-books.
**** NEW INFORMATION: CREATE SEARCHABLE PDF FILES FROM YOUR DEPARTMENT'S XEROX COPIER ****
SAS in collaboration with Print Services has determined that MOST Academic Department Xerox Workstations DO have the ability to create searchable PDF files by changing some of the default settings. Please contact Maureen Bourbeau(SAS) or Phil Hammond (Print Services) to request changing the default settings on your specific department's Xerox machine.
NOTE: The quality of the scanned image will greatly impact the accuracy of the text recognition.
Avoid source documents that contain any of the following:
Color highlighting or underlining
Margin notes or other handwriting
Folds, creases, stains on the paper
Previously photocopied documents
Use the Email option on the Copier and Adjust the scan settings as noted below: NOTE: The specific user interface varies by Xerox Model. Detailed instructions coming soon.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
General adjustments (prior to changing default settings) include:
Email tab-- Output Color -- change to Black and White or Grayscale, NOT "Auto Detect"
Advanced Settings tab-- Resolution-- change from 200 dpi to 300 dpi
Layout Adjustment tab-- Original Size -- Custom Scan Area:
Measure the exact dimensions of your page with a ruler and enter the exact X and Y dimensions of your page. (Be sure to scan one page at a time!)
Email Options tab-- File Format -- PDF--(change “Image Only” to “Searchable” ) if available on your copier.
Converting existing scanned PDF files to searchable PDFs.
If you have an existing image PDF (that is good quality), or you recently created a new scan but did not have the “create searchable PDF” option available to you, there are a couple of options for making these searchable after the fact.
TIP: Always Test your Searchable Scanned PDF’s for Accuracy:
Cut and Paste a random paragraph from your searchable PDF into a blank Word Doc and look for spelling/word errors. A poor quality scanned image may result in multiple recognition errors. The text you see in the Word document is what a student would "hear" when using text-to-speech software. If the text is NOT accurate-- consider rescanning to get a cleaner source image orcontact SAS for assistance. (we have other OCR software tools that allow us to edit the underlying text).
Video Content and Captioning
As more and more video is integrated into the educational environment, our accessibility compliance obligation requires that all video/audio content include captions and/or a transcript if there is a student with hearing loss in the course.
Video Captions also benefit students without disabilities. See the IT Knowledgebase articleWhy Caption? for more information.
For non-native English-speaking students, providing captions will improve comprehension of your lecture videos.
For Instructors with English as a secondary language, providing captions will help improve student comprehension.
Captions help your students understand, spell, and properly pronounce discipline-specific terminology.
Captions provide better cognitive reinforcement. Some students learn better while they read.
Captions can make your lecture content searchable using keywords, via the Media Gallery.
Captions allow videos to be viewed with the sound off in places like the library.
Look for video content that already contains closed captioning.
Good sources include:
TEDTalks contain accurate captions in multiple languages.
PBS, major TV networks, and educational websites such as Kahn Academyoften include accurate captions.
Kanopy (UNH video streaming service --available to all students, faculty, and staff via a UNH login) containing over 30,000 videos.
Search within Subjects: Movies, Documentaries, The Arts, Business, Education, Global Studies & Languages, Health, Media & Communications, Sciences, Social Sciences, Instructional Films and Lessons.
Step 4: **Consider publishing your video to the Media Gallery where the captions will be searchable.
** This may benefit many students, particularly when reviewing Lecture Capture videos. See the IT Knowledgebase,Kaltura: Media Gallery for instructions on this process.
Types of Video Content and How to Upload into Kaltura:
DVD video without subtitles or captions:
DVDs without captions will also need to be “ripped”/downloaded to the computer before being uploaded into Kaltura/MyMedia. This can be done using a free software tool called Handbrake. (see Handbrake instructions)which is available in the Parker Media Lab in Dimond Library.
Once the video is downloaded, follow Steps 1-4above.
First--Review the YouTube video captions for accuracy:
Click on the CC button in the lower right corner of the video to turn on captions then look at the message in the top left corner of the screen. (NOTE: if there is no CC button, then there are no captions!)
If you see a caption language, i.e. English, the captions should be accurate and you can simply embed this captioned video into your Canvas page.
** If you see the words (auto-generated), then you will need to review your entire video to check for errors. And since you cannot edit YouTube video you don't own, you will likely need to download it and run it through Kaltura.
CAUTION: “auto-generated” captions typically contain many errors, do not include any capitalization or punctuation which can be difficult to follow without hearing, and can be distracting and confusing. In the deaf community, these are referred to as “craptions”. #nomorecraptions
If the YouTube (or other 3rd Party video) does NOT include accurate captions:
You will first need to download the video to your computer and then upload into Kaltura via MyMedia.
Once the video is downloaded to your computer, follow Steps 1-4above.
Lecture Capture / Classroom Capture videos:
Lecture videos created with Kaltura Capture or Kaltura Classroom will automatically be uploaded to the Kaltura Media Server. (Older Tegrity videos have also been uploaded to Kaltura). All videos you created can now be accessed via MyMedia in Canvas or via MediaSpace atmedia.unh.edu. All videos uploaded to Kaltura will go through the auto-generated captioning process. However, these captions will need to be reviewed and edited for accuracy. See steps 2-4 above.
SAS RECOMMENDATION: Create a "Welcome/Canvas Orientation" Video for each of your Canvas courses:
Use the Kaltura Capture tool in Canvas/MyMedia to create a brief welcome/orientation/course overview video to introduce yourself, review the syllabus, explain/demonstrate how your course is organized, where to find announcements, assignments, important due dates, etc.
This can be a great way to practice using the Kaltura Capture tool if you are not already familiar with it. You can then embed the video on your course home page for your students to reference throughout the semester as they likely will not remember everything you covered on the first day of class! (or, in the case of ADD/DROP, they may not have even been there). For large lecture classes, this may even save you answering the same questions repeatedly throughout the semester!
Video Recording Tips for Maximizing Caption Accuracy.
Know what you are going to say. Be prepared or draft a script.
Record in a quiet setting away from phones, background noises, interruptions, etc.
Silence your cell phone and any alerts on your computer such as email or RSS feeds.
Use a quality microphone. Consider a headset microphone that plugs into your USB or audio jack on your computer. Avoid using the built-in microphone as the quality is limited.
Be aware of your speaking volume and speed. You may want to do a short test video and listen to it on playback before getting too far along.
Student Accessibility Services (SAS)
201 Smith Hall • 3 Garrison Avenue, Durham, NH 03824-3594