Accessible learning initiatives suffer amid change to online learning

April 7, 2020

“In the quick shift by colleges from in-person to online instruction in response to the coronavirus pandemic,” writes Greta Anderson, “the needs of students with disabilities can sometimes be overlooked.” Issues for students with disabilities amid the recent transition to online learning may incompatible materials for screen readers, live teaching formats that do not include interpreters or real-time captioning, and more. While Duke University Professor Marion Quirici acknowledges that online can be better for some students with disabilities when done in an accessible way, others are struggling with the reduction of social interaction. “Flexibility and approachability should be built into our mission as teachers,” said Quirici. “I hope that one silver lining of this catastrophe is that this is all possible and it can be incorporated into face-to-face environments.” Inside Higher Ed (International)