Accessibility FAQ

The Frequently Asked Questions below provide additional information on a range of topics, such as working with web content, accessibility training, third-party linking and more.

What is accessibility?

"Accessible" means that individuals with disabilities are able to independently acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same services within the same time frame as individuals without disabilities, with substantially equivalent ease of use.

Who is responsible for ensuring accessibility compliance?

Technology accessibility is an institution-wide responsibility. Technology access for individuals with disabilities must provide comparable functionality, affordability, accuracy of content and timeliness of service delivery. Products and services must be usable by the greatest number of people including individuals with disabilities.

Each college, administrative unit, faculty member, and employee is responsible to ensure compliance and, if notified of non-compliance, is required to remediate.

The Office of the Provost oversees the implementation of and compliance with the ICT Accessibility Policy. The Executive Vice President & Provost, or designee, shall appoint a standing ICT Accessibility Committee to coordinate those efforts.

What does the ICT Accessibility Policy cover?

The ICT Accessibility Policy applies to all technology and any equipment or interconnected system or subsystem of equipment that is used in the creation, conversion, or duplication of data or information employed in support of the University's Mission and Core Themes.

ICT includes, but is not limited to, the internet and intranet websites, content delivered in digital form, electronic books and electronic book reading systems, search engines and databases, learning management systems, classroom technology, instructional materials, student response systems ("clickers"), and equipment such as classroom podiums, copiers and fax machines. ICT also includes, but is not limited to, telecommunications products (such as telephones), information kiosks, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), transaction machines (such as payment terminals), computers, ancillary equipment, software, services (including support services), equipment maintained and services operated by third-party vendors, and related resources.

What is Information and Communication Technology (ICT)?

ICT includes, but is not limited to, the internet and intranet websites, content delivered in digital form, electronic books and electronic book reading systems, search engines and databases, learning management systems, classroom technology, instructional materials, student response systems ("clickers"), and equipment such as classroom podiums, copiers and fax machines. ICT also includes, but is not limited to, telecommunications products (such as telephones), information kiosks, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), transaction machines (such as payment terminals), computers, ancillary equipment, software, services (including support services), equipment maintained and services operated by third-party vendors, and related resources.

How does accessibility apply to the web?

The University’s online content and functionality must always follow accepted accessibility standards, summarized in the UNR Benchmarks for Measuring Accessibility.

When does the ICT Accessibility Policy go into effect?

The Policy, originally titled Electronic and Information Technology, was first adopted and included in the University Administrative Manual in March 2015. Major revisions were published June, 2017 and are in effect immediately. ICT Accessibility Policy

Is accessibility training required?

Consistent with the Corrective Action Plan, the University currently offers and requireds annual participation in website accessibility training for academic faculty and anyone responsible for developing, loading, maintaining, or auditing web content and functionality. Until such time as OCR closes its monitoring of this agreement, the University will submit to OCR on a quarterly basis documentation of this training and other measures taken.

Do I need to use the learning management system for my instructional materials?

All faculty and staff are required to use university approved learning management systems (LMS), video servers, instructional tools (such as the plagiarism detection tool), student response systems ("clickers"), etc. for all instructional activities.  All instructional materials and tools (i.e., video, images, documents, mobile applications, student response systems ("clickers"), etc.) are required to be accessible. All third-party content (i.e. publisher content, linked materials, etc.) used in a course must be accessible and is the responsibility of the department or faculty member providing the materials.

What happens if I publish inaccessible content?

Web content identified as non-conformant shall be subject to any or all of the following:

Where can I access University policies on accessibility?

Please refer to the University Administrative Manual, section 7007, for the complete text of the ICT Accessibility Policy.

Who do I contact with questions or for assistance with accessibility?

For assistance with accessibility, or to report an issue, please use the Accessibility Help Form. The form is setup to automatically route your request to the appropriate individual(s) who can best assist you with your request.

What type of training is available?

The University currently offers—and will soon require—website accessibility training for academic faculty and anyone responsible for developing, loading, maintaining, or auditing web content and functionality.

How do I register for accessibility training?

You can sign up for Accessibility training through Teaching & Learning Technologies' (TLT) online sign up system.Links to an accessible alternative registration web form, as well as the online sign up system, are located on the Workshops & Trainings page.

Who do I contact if I have accessibility questions?

For assistance with accessibility, or to report an issue, please use the Accessibility Help Form. The web form is setup to automatically route your request to the appropriate individual(s) who can best assist you with your request.

What types of resources are available to support accessibility?

A list of resources for faculty/staff can be found on the Faculty & Staff Accessibility Section of the University Website.

Is a training calendar available?

You can view upcoming training through the Teaching & Learning Technologies' (TLT) online sign up system. Links to an accessible alternative list of dates, as well as the online sign up system, are located on the Workshops & Trainings page.

How do I check the accessibility of my digital content or documents in the Content Management System (CMS)?

To check the accessibility of your digital content or documents, you should contact your Web Communications Specialist or Web Representative and request a report for the web pages you are interested in.  Web Communications Specialists and Web Representatives are responsible for monitoring and assisting in resolving the accessibility issues identified by the Accessibility Monitoring Tool (AMT).  Currently, the University uses SiteImprove as its Accessibility Monitoring Tool.  For access to SiteImprove, please use the Accessibility Help Form and specify SiteImprove Access.

There are also two free browser extensions for Chrome, the WAVE Tool and the SiteImprove Accessibility Checker, that can assist with spot checking of individual web pages.

How do I check my instructional materials for accessibility?

For assistance with checking accessibility for instructional materials, please contact the Instructional Design Team of Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) by email (idt@unr.edu) or by phone (775) 682-6798.

What is alt text?

Alt text or alternative text is a short text description of the contents of an image.  The terms Alt Tag and Alt Text are commonly used to refer to the property of an image object either on a web page or in a document.  Alt Text is required on all non-decorative images, so that users who utilize assistive technologies, such as screen readers, can enjoy the same experience as their nondisabled peers.

How do I write an alt text for technical images?

Be specific and concise. Consider what can be obtained from nearby text and what can only be described in context of the image.

For specific technical guidance, see Image Description Guidelines or contact Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) by email (tlt@unr.edu) or by phone (775) 682-6798.

How can I check if my image has alt text?

There are different ways to verify that an image has a proper alt text/tag.  One common way is to use the WAVE Tool (a free chrome browser extension) that will overlay the alt text above/near each image on the page.  If you are familiar with the developer/inspection tools of your preferred browser, you can inspect the html code of your webpage to verify that image has proper alt text/tags.  If you are creating documents using software such as Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat Pro, please refer to the software's documentation for specific steps on how to verify your images have alt text.

How do I create an accessible hyperlink?

To create an accessible hyperlink, use descriptive link text to provide context about the page that the hyperlink directs users to.  For example, you should use “More information about …” rather than just “More Info”.  Avoid using phases such as “See More”, “Learn More”, etc.  Always be as descriptive as possible while remaining concise.

How do I get my video materials/content captioned?

The campus has implemented new rules for course materials requiring all course content to be accessible.  This means that all video content needs to have closed captions. While there are numerous questions about these new rules that we may not be able to address (i.e. funding), we are here to help you through the technological aspects of the process. If you would like to discuss getting your instructional video content captioned or have pressing questions, feel free to stop by the Instructional Design suite in the Knowledge Center (411) or email idt@unr.edu.

How long does captioning take?

Plan on a minimum of 48 hours to over a week for longer materials.  Timelines depend on variables such as video length, audio quality, and language complexity.

How do I request captioning for instructional content?

Email captions@unr.edu or call Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) at (775) 682-6798.

How do get my non-instructional videos captioned?

You may use a 3rd party source (even automated captioning via YouTube as long as you edit for 95% accuracy or better), or Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) (775) 682-6798 can help set you up with a subaccount through 3PlayMedia, which is an accurate, fee-based service that doesn’t require manual editing.

What should I do if my department has a library or archives of non-instructional videos or content on a website?

The videos should be captioned and content should be made accessible according to conformance timelines presented in the ICT Accessibility Procedures.

How do I make my PDF/Word document accessible?

Accessibility checkers built into Microsoft Word (Windows 2010, 2013+; Mac 2016+) and Adobe Acrobat Pro (Version 8+) provide guidance for remediation. A best practice for PDFs is to create an accessible document in a program such as Word, then convert to PDF so it will retain accessibility features.

Contact Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) (775) 682-6798 for assistance and/or individual or group training opportunities.

How do I make a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation accessible?

PowerPoint has an accessibility checker (Windows Office 2010/2013+; Mac Office 2016+), which also provides some guidance for remediation. Contact Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) (775) 682-6798 for assistance and/or individual or group training opportunities.

How do I make an Excel spreadsheet accessible?

Excel has an accessibility checker (Windows Office 2010/2013+; Mac Office 2016+), which also provides some guidance for remediation. Contact Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) (775) 682-6798 for assistance and/or individual or group training opportunities.

How do I make organizational charts accessible?

Traditional organizational charts are inherently inaccessible due to their visual nature.  To ensure that the most users can experience the information conveyed in a particular organizational chart, be sure to include the same information in text format on the same page as the image of the organizational chart.

If I plan to, or currently use, a third party site on my web page(s), does it have to be made accessible?

It is up to the individual content creators, Web Representatives and/or Web Communication Specialists to ensure that third party content used for instructional purposes is accessible.  This includes both content that is linked to and content that is embedded.  For non-instructional content, content creators, Web Representatives and/or Web Communication Specialists are responsible for ensuring embedded content is accessible.

If the third party site is not accessible, content creators, Web Representatives and/or Web Communication Specialists must work with the Disability Resource Center and any affected students to create an Equally Effective Alternative Access Plan (EEAAP) accommodation upon request.

How do I test a third party site for accessibility?

To check the accessibility of a third party site, you should use the WAVE Tool and the SiteImprove Accessibility Checker, both are free browser extensions for Chrome that can assist with spot checking of individual web pages.

As a researcher, how do I make my research document accessible?

The answer can depend on how you’re creating your document (Word, LaTeX, etc.).  Accessibility checkers built into Microsoft Word (Windows 2010, 2013+; Mac 2016+) and Adobe Acrobat Pro (Version 8+) also provide guidance for remediation.

Contact Teaching & Learning Technologies (TLT) (775) 682-6798 for assistance and/or individual or group training opportunities

How to I make a map in PDF format accessible?

Maps are inherently inaccessible due to their visual nature.  To ensure that the most users can experience the information conveyed in a particular map, be sure to include the same information in text format on the same page as the image of the map.

What software/tools need to go through the procurement process?

All Information and Communication Technology (ICT) acquisitions must follow the Purchasing Guidelines established by the Nevada System of Higher Education Business Center North (BCN) Purchasing Department and adhere to the UNR ICT Procurement Procedure (Section 2.3).

The purchaser must require the vendor to ensure all ICT is accessible. The ICT Accessibility Committee can assist the purchaser in working with vendors. Please use the Accessibility Help Form to request guidance.The form is setup to automatically route your request to the appropriate individual(s) who can best assist you with your request.

How can I ensure my third-party application tool/software is accessible prior to purchase or renewal?

  1. Follow the ICT Procurement Procedures (Section 2.3) when purchasing technology.
  2. Request the related accessibility documentation from vendor (e.g. Vendor Product Accessibility Template) if possible.
  3. To check the accessibility of a third party web application tool or software, you should use the WAVE Tool and the SiteImprove Accessibility Checker, both are free browser extensions for Chrome that can assist with spot checking of individual web pages.
  4. Use the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Software Accessibility Review web form to request additional help determining if a product is accessible.