Digital Accessibility Resources at Emerson

What is Digital Accessibility?

Accessible digital content is that which all people, regardless of disability or impairment, can perceive, navigate, and use with equivalent ease. This content can include websites, electronic documents, desktop and mobile apps, course content containing images, audio, or video, Zoom meetings, and more. Accessible content provides all people the opportunity to acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same services.

In academic year '20-'21, Student Accessibility Services (SAS) worked with 581 students on academic accommodations.
  • Auditory - Examples: hard of hearing, deafness
  • Cognitive - Examples: ADHD, dyslexia, autism
  • Physical - Examples: paralysis, lack of use of limbs
  • Speech - Examples: speech impediment, inability to speak
  • Visual - Examples: low vision, blindness, color-blindness
  • People using mobile phones, smart watches, smart TVs, and other devices with small screens, different input modes, etc.
  • Older people with changing abilities due to aging
  • People with “temporary disabilities” such as a broken arm or lost glasses
  • People with “situational limitations” such as in bright sunlight or in an environment where they cannot listen to audio
  • People using a slow Internet connection, or who have limited or expensive bandwidth
  • People for whom the content’s language is not their first language


Digital Accessibility Guides

When possible, create quizzes using the Canvas Quizzes tool. The most commonly requested accommodation is extended time on tests; about 200 students each semester have this accommodation. Canvas quizzes can quickly and easily be adjusted for accommodation requests such as extending the time allotted to take the quiz, providing different due dates for individual students, or providing extra attempts. 


Training Opportunities

Learn More

Get Help

The resources on this page concern proactively designing accessible content rather than reacting to specific accommodation requests.

  • To learn about available support for fulfilling text-to-speech accommodations, please see the Iwasaki Library's page on Support for Accommodations.
  • If you have questions about accommodations for students, please contact Student Accessibility Services (SAS) at
  • If you have questions about accommodations for faculty or staff, please contact Human Resources (HR) at
  • If you have questions about building digital accessibility into your course design and content, please contact the Instructional Technology Group (ITG) at
Some information in this article is from the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) document: Introduction to Web Accessibility. Shawn Lawton Henry, ed. Copyright © 2021 W3C® (MIT, ERCIM, Keio). Status: Updated 5 June 2019. First published February 2005.
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