Equal Access and Accessibility to Classroom Materials

Providing Handouts for:

Students with Print Disabilities

Students with print disabilities may vary in the need for electronic format materials. Students who are blind will require all materials in electronic format.

Students who are Dyslexic

Students who are dyslexic may vary in the extent of the need for electronic format text. Some may require all text while others may manage small amounts of text such as syllabi, etc.

Students Requiring Electronic or Alternative Text

Students requiring electronic or alternative text, should be sent (before class if possible ) an electronic version of any materials you prepare and provide in class (preferably Microsoft Word format or accessible PDF) such as:

  • Syllabi
  • Assignment Descriptions/Project Handouts/Essay Criteria
  • Other course handouts and resources

Handouts or Readings

When giving handouts or readings that are Xerox copies of pages from books or articles, you have many different options for providing equal access alternative text to your students. NOTE: scanned materials and many online PDF's are actually pictures and do not contain actual words.

Claro Read

We strongly encourage instructors to use the highly effective and user-friendly text to speech and text conversion program, which the LSC has purchased for campus wide use, ClaroRead.

This program is available for personal download onto your laptops and computers as well as is available in all student computer labs on campus. This program will convert pdfs to Word Document and is userfriendly with editing operations.

This is helpful for instructor's who only need to send a student a short amount of information and/or require more flexibility in weekly planning than what the LSC can offer you. Please contact, Nick Mourning to receive the download information for ClaroRead.

Google Docs

Another easy and effective technique is to download any inaccessible document (such as a copied article in PDF form) into Google Drive. Then open the document as a Google Document. For most documents, especially pdfs, this will automatically convert the pdf into a readable document and into a format which can be converted into Microsoft Word.

Larger Handouts

For larger handouts (chapters or entire books), the LSC will convert the information to electronic format. We will scan the information, run an OCR (optical character recognition) program, and edit the text so the words can be read by a screen reader. This takes a considerable amount of time. Please expect at least a week per document.

We prefer that you send us the source or reference for the handout which will allow us to search for an electronic version online.

While we search, we will also need to be ready to prepare the electronic version ourselves. So rather than giving us the Xerox copy, whenever possible please provide us with the original book or journal, etc. and we will scan those pages. This will provide a cleaner copy requiring less editing.

Xerox copies generally do not scan easily into a readable electronic format. Most times these require a great deal of editing because words are not read correctly. This delays getting materials to the student.

Questions about Procedures

Questions about these procedures can be directed to the LSC Learning Specialist, Nick Mourning at or x0411 or the Learning Disabilities Director, Dr. Pamela Schwartz at or x0825.