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ERIC Number: EJ1018298
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Oct
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1939-5256
Designing Online Courses for Screen Reader Users
Kearns, Lorna R.; Frey, Barbara A.; McMorland, Gabriel
Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, v17 n3 p73-86 Oct 2013
A review of multiple online courses at one institution was conducted by a skilled screen reader user for the purpose of assessing the extent to which the courses were navigable and understandable to online students using assistive technologies. This paper identifies features of online courses that may present problems for screen reader users and recommends solutions to address those problems. The following two overarching recommendations are suggested and elaborated: (1) just as a roadmap assists drivers in navigating unfamiliar terrain, principles of clarity, consistency, and organization should be applied to the design of online courses to orient students to the virtual learning environment and (2) web pages and course documents should make effective use of metadata (i.e., machine-understandable information about computer-based content) in order for course material to be accurately understood by students using a screen reader.
Sloan Consortium. P.O. Box 1238, Newburyport, MA 01950. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A