Blackboard Accessibility Programs
Blackboard sponsors different accessibility programs to promote research, share best practices, and engage users.
Blackboard Accessibility Grant
Ensuring that the world’s most used platform for teaching and learning is accessible to all users is a critical part of Blackboard’s mission to build a better education experience. At the National Federation of the Blind’s 2010 Convention, Blackboard received the third annual Dr. Jacob Bolotin Award for “groundbreaking work in accessibility.”
In recognition of great contributors such as Dr. Bolotin and the National Federation of the Blind, Blackboard announced the Blackboard Accessibility Grant, a program to support work enabling education for students with disabilities. Through the Blackboard Accessibility Grant, Blackboard reinvested the $10,000 Dr. Bolotin award back into the accessible education community, and more than matched that amount.
Five grants in the amount of $5,000 were awarded through a submission and evaluation process detailed in this blog post. The grants are now funding projects that help further access to education for students with disabilities. Each project focuses on research that drives results that benefit students with disabilities, and includes a plan for working with students with disabilities during the research. Blackboard employees continue to donate their time providing insight, research, guidance, information, and support to the grant recipients.
These projects are scheduled for completion in the summer of 2012. Plans for showcasing completed projects will be announced soon.
Blackboard Accessibility Interest Group
The Blackboard® Accessibility Interest Group is an active community of users who meet regularly to discuss accessibility issues in education. Working in sub-committees on various topics that interest them, this group of over 100 clients have a substantial impact on the Blackboard community at large. The group has welcomed Blackboard team members to be a part of their activities. Representatives from Blackboard Client Support, Content Development, Product Design and User Interface Design have all participated and continue to work closely with this strategic group of clients.
If you are interested in joining the Blackboard Accessibility Interest Group, register on their collaboration site and join their LISTSERV.
Blackboard Accessibility Partners
Similar to our Product Development Partnership programs, Blackboard regularly partners with clients who are interested in offering in depth and focused accessibility assistance into new development projects. This partnership requires a more significant time commitment from clients who will work directly with Product Development engineering and design, creating new solutions within Blackboard Learn. If you are interested in this program, please email ClientPrograms@blackboard.com