Faculty & Staff Support

ASL Interpreter helping a student and professor communicate in class
Professor presenting a slideshow to his class
Guest speaker, Ken Petry, speaks at a past Access MU symposium to a large audience
The varsity hockey team glides across the ice with members of the Best Buddies Choir

You may be hearing more about the issue of accessibility and in particular, how it affects you as a faculty or staff member. We are striving to keep you informed and hope you will take advantage of the various Miami resources available.

What does it mean to make communication accessible and why is it so important?

Communication is important. Everyone needs to know the expectations of both students and faculty. This is often communicated through the syllabus. What happens if the documentation isn't accessible and can't be viewed by all students? What happens if a students doesn't follow the syllabus and misses a critical piece of information only to respond by I couldn't access the material? Communication starts the precedent of the course, the professor and most importantly the students.

Why has accessibility suddenly become an issue?

It hasn't been sudden, but it may be more obvious as of late. Miami has provided accommodations and accessible text to students for many years. With the most recent news of the decree, individuals may be hearing more about accessibility. So, what do you need to do about it? The Roles and Responsibilities section covers this in more detail. If you're faculty and wanting to create an accessible document, we have many How-To options.

What is Miami doing to establish policy and encourage 508 compliance?

Miami is working hard at building accessibility into the infrastructure of the school. In doing so, IT has a program, Accessible Technology Services, that is working to provide more detailed and specific information to help answer this. In the meantime you'll see guidelines, best practices and policies coming out to help establish a University compliance.

Roles and Responsibilities

Miami employees have a variety of roles and responsibilities. Do you understand your role in helping Miami be the most accessible University possible? Do you know how accessibility is affected by your daily activities or job description? Incorporating accessibility into your daily work can help make a better environment for all users. To learn more, see Roles and Responsibilities.

Course Design

For best practices in teaching, pedagogy for inclusion with disabilities, and resolution to problem areas you may encounter, see Accessible Course Design.

Purchasing

If you purchase or influence the selection/purchasing of textbooks, you'll want to check out some of Miami's new purchasing guidelines. For example, did you know there is a quick and easy way to see if the textbook you select offers an etext option? To discover this and more, see Procurement and do your part to make Miami an accessible campus!

FAQs

As we work to develop a comprehensive list of FAQs for faculty on the topic of accessibility, please let us know if you don't see your question so we can add it. Odds are, you aren't the only one wanting to know the answer.

Syllabus

Did you ever consider that the design of your syllabus could influence its accessibility? Even a few improvements could mean the difference between comprehension and confusion. For some best practice tips for designing an accessible syllabus, see Syllabus.