Accessibility Services: Resources For Faculty And Staff

Resources For Supporting Students

Moodle Resources

Moodle Accessible Course Design

A brief description of accessible course design elements to include in your Moodle class.

Adding Moodle Closed Captioning Through YouTube

A video tutorial on adding closed captions to videos in Moodle using Youtube’s automatic closed captioning feature.

Top 10 Accessibility Questions Asked By Faculty

1.  Will a student tell me about their disability?

It is the student’s choice whether they elect to disclose their diagnosis to their professors.  AS will only discuss student information regarding the arrangement of their accommodations.  Details of diagnosis will only be shared with a specific party if a student has provided permission in writing to AS.  However, a student electing to utilize their accommodations will provide you with a copy of their Accommodation Letter.

2.  What privacy laws are applicable to students with disabilities?

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) protects the privacy of our students educational records.  All notes and medical documentation submitted to AS is kept completely separate from the student’s academic record.  AS cannot divulge a student’s diagnosis without their written permission.

3.  What qualifies as a disability?

A disability is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. Major life activities related to education include, but are not limited to: walking, sleeping, eating, learning, reading, writing, processing, hearing, etc.

4.  What is an accommodation?

An accommodation is an adjustment made to a policy and/or the environment to ensure a student with a disability has equal opportunity to benefit from the education process.  An accommodation could be an auxiliary aid, services, or adjustments to course materials, campus programs, information, activities, housing, dining, and other campus facilities.  Accommodations will vary from student to student.

5.  What is a fundamental alternation?

A “fundamental alteration” means a change made that is so significant that it alters the essential nature of goods, services, facilities or accommodations offered.  Accommodations serve to remove barriers in education but do not fundamentally alter any essential requirement, objective or components of a course or program.  Accommodations cannot lower any requirement of a class, program or event.

6.  What is an accommodation letter?

An accommodation letter is provided to eligible students who are registered with Accessibility Services.  The letter states what accommodations a student is eligible to utilize.  The letters expire every semester.  Students may hand deliver a physical copy to you or email it directly to you.  All students are strongly encouraged to share their letter with their professor/s the first week of classes and have a discussion regarding their accommodations.  This provides both the student and instructor an opportunity to ask and answer any questions either party might have.

7.  What are the types of accommodations on campus?

Academic Accommodations:  Common examples are permission to record lectures, accessible seating, priority registration, course notes support, alternative format textbooks and use of assistive technology.

Testing Accommodations:  Typically these are test proctoring provided in an alternative testing location (LSSU Testing Services), extended test time, distraction reduced testing environment, use of computer for typing or other assistive technology.

Campus Accommodations:  Examples include classroom adjustments, accessible housing and dietary accommodations.

8.  Are classroom accommodations different from accommodations provided at an internship, field work, clinical site, practicum or other school sponsored activity?

Yes, they can be.  Accommodations are created on an individual, case by case basis.  Accommodations may need to be reviewed and adjusted depending on the learning environment.  For example, a site visit prior to the start of an internship may be necessary in order to determine how best to remove barriers for the student.

9.  Do I have to provide accommodations to students with temporary health impairments?

Yes, the ADA does not stipulate that an individual must experience a disability for a specific amount of time.  Students with temporary health conditions should be referred to Accessibility Services and accommodations need to be provided.

10.  How do I refer a student to AS?

Please encourage students to contact  or call (906) 635-2355 to begin the conversation regarding accommodations.  While some students enter the University with a diagnosis or history of receiving accommodations, others may need assistance seeking a medical diagnosis or have recently received a new one.

***Due to COVID-19, the Office of Accessibility Services is only meeting with students over the phone or virtually.

Disability Etiquette

Disability Etiquette   A helpful article on the respectful use of words with people with disabilities.

Disability Etiquette Tips  How to be respectful and mindful when working with persons using wheelchairs, with speech difficulties, with cognitive/language impairments, hearing loss, vision loss, multiple chemical sensitivities and mental health disabilities.

TED Talk:  When We Design for Disability, We all Benefit,  Elise Ro

Tools for Supporting Students

PowerPoint Presentations

Use the built in slide layouts.  This will ensure the reading order of the slide is the same for individuals who utilize assistive technology.

The recommended font size is no smaller than 32 for Powerpoint presentations.

Avoid using slide animation effects, as this may cause issues for those using assistive technology.

Using the tables in Powerpoint when possible to convey data.  If including your own table or chart, be sure to include a header row as this is what screen readers often use to determine rows and columns.

If you are using any photos, charts, clipart, graphics or videos, you must include alternative text ( Click Here )

WebAIM Additional Powerpoint Techniques 

Microsoft PowerPoint Adding Closed Captions

To add caption & subtitles to your PowerPoint presentation, click on the Slideshow tab, Captions & Subtitles, then Subtitle Settings.  *Live caption will not show up if you record the presentation in PowerPoint.

Microsoft Powerpoint Built-In Accessibility Check Feature

PowerPoint includes a tool that will identify many common accessibility issues. The accessibility checker is basically the same in Windows and Mac, but the steps to start the check are different.To run the accessibility checker in Windows, select File > Info. Select the Check for Issues button and choose Check Accessibility.

Documents, Text, Font Size and Type

Text should be left aligned whenever possible, rather than centered.  

If possible, select layout options and use text wrapping for graphics, pictures, charts and tables in your documents.

Use at least a size 12 point font or larger.

Use Sans serif fonts, such as Arial, or Verdana.  These are more easily read than serif fonts, such as Times New Roman.

Electronic Communication

Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act requires electronic communications to be accessible.  Examples include websites, videoconferencing, Moodle, and classroom course content, emails, and web documents.  Closed captions are a requirement for video content.

Transcripts vs. Captions

Transcripts are a document provided after a recorded lecture or meeting.  They are not live.  They are provided afterward and are typically a separate document the viewer can access.

Captions or live captioning can be provided in real-time or after the fact.  Captions are typically provided via a third party service.  Captions can also be created after a recording.  They are made in the same language as the video, broken down into time segments, and displayed in the video.

Video-Conferencing Support & Live Closed Captioning

Zoom: Closed-Captioning Support

Audio Transcript (Post Meeting)

With your LSSU managed Zoom account, live audio can be saved as a caption file by selecting, “Record to Cloud.”  Post-meeting, the host can download the meeting in one of three file types.  If video icon is selected, the user can download and edit the transcript for accuracy, then apply it to the video as closed captions.  Zoom only saves files for 200 days, so please remember to download it.  Please note, it typically takes 1.5 times longer to create the audio transcribed file, than the length of the actual recording, so transcription is not immediately available for download.

The Zoom live closed caption allows you or another meeting attendee, assigned by the host, to add closed captioning in a meeting. In a webinar, closed captioning can be typed by the host, co-host, or panelist assigned by the host. You can type the closed captions directly via Zoom or you can integrate a third party service.

Google Meet Closed Captioning

Google Meet now allows users to make meetings more accessible by turning on live captioning.  Captions can be seen by both parties in real-time, but there is not an option to get a text file of your live transcript.

Free Transcript & Captioning Supports

YouTube Support:  Automatic Captioning

YouTube:  Add Your Own Subtitles & Closed Captioning

YouTube provides the ability to add your own subtitles and closed captioning. Or, users can have YouTube automatically add closed captioning to their video.  This provides the ability to go back and make edits for accuracy.

Microsoft Word Speech to Text 

Microsoft Word uses a dictation program, which will take your voice and transcribe it into text. You could also upload an MP3 audio file and have it converted to text.  Dictation will also pick up on changes in tone of voice and mark them differently so you are able to notice the differences in a conversation. This is available for download as well, but Microsoft recommended the web version for better use of this program.


A free closed captioning software that allows you to add closed captioning to your own video.


A screen recorder that allows you to record your screen and a webcam simultaneously and add closed captioning to your video (Fee may apply).