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Empowering Technologies
Conference News : 23/02/2016
Digital Accessibility in Higher and Further Education Conference 2016 - From MOOCs to STEM and many more topics

Event Date: Thu 7th April, 2016

Meeting the needs of the increasing number of students with disabilities.

BCS conference website for further information and registration

Digital accessibility addresses the needs of people with disabilities to access online resources. The objective of this conference is to share understanding and best teaching practice on how to support students with disabilities to achieve their full potential. The disciplinary focus is computing and information science and technology within higher and further education.

When: Thursday 7th April 2016

Where: BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT
Address: First Floor, The Davidson Building, 5 Southampton Street, London, WC2E 7HA

Organiser: Digital Accessibility Specialist Group (DASG)

Who: Academics and FE teachers in computing or STEM, disability support and planning staff, those developing online course materials and assessment tools, teacher training professionals and STEM students.


In this one day conference we will examine two aspects of improving accessibility of teaching and learning within the area of computing:

• Training the next generation of IT professionals in best practice for making IT systems accessible.
• Best practice in providing accessible course materials and learning experiences

We have four invited speakers talking about teaching methods and content, and online teaching delivery, and a demonstration. In addition you have the choice of four breakout sessions. These will include selected submissions of position papers or case studies.

BCS Members: £60.00, Non-members: £84.00, Students: £30.00

Please register by Monday 7th March 2016 at

Draft Programme
10.00 am Registration and Coffee
10.30 am Plenary – Chair – Jeremy Barlow, BCS Director of Standards
10.30 am Welcome – Gill Whitney, Middlesex University
10.40 am How to Teach and What to Teach – David Sloan, The Paciello Group.
11.00 am Accessible Teaching Methodologies for STEM subjects - Emma Cliffe, University of Bath
11.20 am Accessible MOOC – EA Draffan, University of Southampton
11.40 am “Blackboard” demonstration
12.00 noon Accessibility Content to support future employability of Computing and STEM students – Peter Olaf Looms, Looms Consulting
12.20 pm Discussion
12.45 pm to 13.45 pm Lunch
13.45 pm Breakout Sessions

There are four parallel sessions to choose from and you are invited to submit a short position paper or case study relevant to the session. The four sessions represent the stages from the creation of accessible subject material, through accessible methods of transmission of knowledge to accessible assessments and examinations.

1. Accessible delivery of STEM and Computing Science Content.
How do we deliver specialist content to students with a range of disabilities successfully whilst enhancing the student learning experience?

2. Accessible Virtual Learning Environment (VLE).
How do we ensure that the design and use of VLEs supports full student participation?

3. Accessible Texts.
How can texts be designed and presented to enable knowledge to be communicated efficiently?

4. Accessible Assessments.
How can we design and run innovative, accurate accessible assessments of the student learning?
15.15 pm to 15.45 pm Tea
15.45 pm Plenary
12 Steps to Digital Accessibility in Higher and Further Education
Three points from each of the chairs of the breakout session’s followed by a discussion.

16.30 End

For more information
Gill Whitney,
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