Common Sense Approaches to ADA Compliance

Concurrent Session 7

Session Materials

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Brief Abstract

With recent developments surrounding legal proceedings related to ADA compliance, educational institutions need to think strategically with regard to ADA compliance. Compliance can be costly, and seem at times like an insurmountable challenge. This session will be a discussion on strategies, approaches and solutions on how to meet these challenges.


Ron works closely with the academic administrators and faculty to develop new programs, oversee coursework quality, as well as standards and creates faculty development programs for online instruction. Other responsibilities include expanding the use of advanced technologies in both online and classroom instruction and strengthening student support services. Ron has presented at national, and international conferences on topics related to faculty development and e-learning engagement.

Extended Abstract

The University of North Carolina Wilmington is a medium size regional institution with a student body of close to 15,000.  With only a modest catalogue of online programs, UNCW’s online courses number close to 900.  A report from the University’s internal audit found that the University’s online courses were largely not meeting ADA compliance standards.  The office of the Vice Chancellor of Distance Education, along with the office of e-learning were charged with the task of bringing existing courses into compliance as well as determining a plan of action so that future course development would incorporate universal design principles and meet accessibility standards.  This challenge required a great deal of resources and strategic planning. The university has incorporated a three-pronged approach through policy, technology, and training.  This session will feature an overview of what has been accomplished so far, a discussion of the challenges faced by other institutions, and how different areas within higher educational institutions can come together to meet these challenges. 

Discussion questions will include:

  • Who is responsible for ADA compliance at your institution?
  • How are accessibility measures funded at your institution?
  • How have you addressed the issue of retrofitting existing courses for ADA compliance?
  • What technologies have proven helpful in meeting these challenges?