Are all library resources accessible for students, faculty, and staff with disabilities? It’s a good question. We’re trying to help everyone in the library answer it.
The entire library staff is united in its commitment to accessibility, but we vary in our capacity to assess the accessibility of a specific resource or to implement change in a specific area. In the middle of our Library-wide commitment, we have a major concentration of accessibility expertise, in a few positions explicitly devoted to accessibility and many more that deal directly with accessibility in roles related to outreach, facilities, electronic resources, and more.
In order to facilitate the sharing of information from our centers of expertise to the broader group of all staff, we have recently formed the Digital Accessibility Team (DAT) and started offering Accessibility Office Hours. Our Office Hours are open to all library staff, as well as folks beyond the library. Our group of Digital Accessibility experts gather in ScholarSpace to answer questions big and small from anyone who has them.
Over our first 2 months, Library staff have visited our group to
- get feedback on a web application under development
- assess a software solution the Library might purchase
- share experience of barriers in our physical spaces
- understand best practices before redesigning web content
- and much more
Many visits have led to longer conversations and collaborations with DAT. Since we are a new group, each encounter is a chance to learn about our staff needs and how we can best meet them. The DAT is currently developing an accessibility audit service for Library staff that we will formalize and provide on request. What other services should we provide? Come by and tell us.
Accessibility Office Hours
Where: ScholarSpace, Hatcher 206
When: 2nd and 4th Friday each month, 2-4pm
What: Open office hours for all accessibility questions and consultations.
Who: Stephanie Rosen, Ben Howell, Jon Earley, Bridget Burke, Jon McGlone