Perkins Access Programs

The MBLC and Perkins Access (a division of Perkins School for the Blind) collaborated on a project to support Massachusetts libraries in creating digital materials of all types that are accessible to users with disabilities. Based on consultation with MBLC staff and direct feedback from libraries, Perkins Access created a series of customized training courses aimed at ensuring that digital materials and communication methods are as accessible as possible. Experts from Perkins Access will offer guidance on accessibility best practices, suggest easy-to-implement solutions, and discuss the unique challenges and opportunities regarding improved digital accessibility for all audiences. The 12-part series begins with a session focused on basic online accessibility, followed by deeper dives into a variety of topics, such as inclusive language skills; testing digital materials for accessibility, and using Zoom’s built-in features to support accessible meetings.

The series is open to members of the Massachusetts library community. It is scheduled to take place during April and May 2022. Each session is a standalone event, allowing libraries to focus on the areas that are most relevant to them in improving service to their communities. Sessions will not be recorded.

Web Accessibility 101

Wednesday April 20, 2pm-3pm

Learn the basics of digital accessibility: the benefits of inclusive design for everyone, the impact of inaccessible content, and how assistive technology helps people with disabilities independently access information online.  Gain basic knowledge of policies and laws pertaining to digital accessibility.

Creating Accessible Web Content

Wednesday April 27, 10am-11am

A discussion and demonstration about practical ways of writing and structuring content to be accessible to people with disabilities.

Image Descriptions

Thursday April 28, 3pm-4pm

A summary of guidelines, rules, and requirements for online image descriptions; best practices for writing descriptions for various types of images; information on how and when to convey information about race, ethnicity and disability when describing people in images.

Accessible Multimedia

Thursday May 5, 10am-11am

A general introduction covering captions, transcripts, audio descriptions and media players.

How to Test for Accessibility

Friday May 6, 11am-12pm

An introduction to free tools that anyone can use test Web sites for accessibility.

Accessible Documents (1): Google Docs/Word

Monday May 9, 2pm-3pm

Learn basic techniques for creating Word documents and Google Docs that are as accessible as possible, and that export to accessible PDFs.

Accessible Documents (2): Google Slides/PowerPoint

Thursday May 12, 2-3pm

Learn basic techniques for creating PowerPoint documents Google Slides that are as accessible as possible, and that export to accessible PDFs.

Accessible Documents (3): Canva

Tuesday May 17, 11am-12pm

Learn how to create materials in Canva so they can be exported as PDFs that are accessible to all users.

Online Meetings: Accessible Zoom

Wednesday May 18, 2-3pm

Learn how to use Zoom's built-in tools that support accessible meetings, as well as techniques for presenting content in a manner that is accessible to the entire audience.

Inclusive Language Skills: Writing about People with Disabilities

Friday May 20, 11am-12pm

Basic guidance to help avoid the use of ableist language when creating content for Web sites, documentation, and other digital materials.

Accessibility for Marketers

Thursday May 26, 3pm-4pm

Guidance on marketing best practices when creating content for Web sites, social media, email and internal/external digital materials.

Procurement

Friday May 27, 11am-12pm

A summary of digital accessibility considerations that apply to the procurement process.  Learn what to ask vendors, how to decipher accessibility conformance reports, and how to add accessibility requirements to your contracts.

For More Information

Lyndsay Forbes, Project Manager and Grant Specialist
617-725-1860 x252
857-488-6616 (Mobile)
lyndsay.forbes@mass.gov