Grand Valley State University uses Blackboard for the institution's enterprise learning management system. Blackboard is fully committed to delivering products that conform to the highest levels of accessibility standards and has created a web page that highlights their work in accessibility including specific product accessibility information such as VPAT and WCAG 2.0 conformance documentation.
The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) awarded Blackboard Learn with a Nonvisual Accessibility Gold Certification, making it the first learning management system to achieve this certification.
While the Blackboard environment conforms to accessibility, it's important also to ensure content uploaded by faculty adheres to WCAG 2.0 conformance. The eLearning and Emerging Technologies Digital Studio has created a series of tips for creating accessible online course content. In addition, GVSU's Disability Support Resources office offers guidance and recommendations for making documents accessible for faculty as they create and upload course content.
Blackboard provides the following documentation for the Learn product:
Blackboard provides the following documents for the Collaborate product:
Learn more on Blackboard’s commitment to accessibility on the Blackboard web site.
Blackboard has also recently introduced a dedicated accessibility product called Ally. Ally provides:
Currently, this is a separate product that is not licensed by the university.
To recognize Global Accessibility Awareness Day 2016, Blackboard held a contest to find the most inclusive classrooms in the United States. Blackboard looked for teachers who have put in the extra time and effort to ensure their pedagogy, content, and classroom technology enables all students to learn and be successful without complex accommodations.
1st Place Award
Cheryl Kautz, Affiliate Instructor, in the School of Computing and Information Systems at GVSU received a 1st Place Award
As 1st place winner of this contest, Blackboard was invited Cheryl to share her story as part of the Accessibility Track at the BbWorld Conference that was held on July 12-14 in Las Vegas, NV.
2nd Place Award
Szymon Machajewski, Affiliate Instructor, in the School of Computing and Information Systems at GVSU received a 2nd Place Award
As a 2nd place winner of this contest, Blackboard was invited Szymon to share his story as part of the Accessibility Track at the BbWorld Conference that was held on July 12-14 in Las Vegas, NV.
The eLearning and Emerging Technologies department offers our congratulations to Cheryl Kautz and Szymon Machajewski in their hard work to support student success through creating instruction that is inclusive!
More information about these awards is available on the eLearning blog.