Digital Accessibility

Digital Accessibility at LWTech

LWTech is committed to providing digital content that is in an accessible format to all people wherever possible as per federal guidelines. We will take actions to ensure that all LWTech community members with disabilities have an equal opportunity to access and utilize information materials, technologies, and technology-related services.

“The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.”

Tim Berners-Lee

Digital accessibility, and how we support persons with disabilities, is a shared responsibility across the college. Accessible materials ensure all students can participate in, and benefit from, learning opportunities.

Accessibility is Giving Equitable Access to Everyone

Students with disabilities at LWTech deserve equitable rights to accessible classes, websites, documents, and any other digital method by which they access their education. Accessibility is essential to remove barriers for students. Learn what digital accessibility is and how your everyday work contributes to creating digital content.

 

The following video, created by Portland Community College, includes stories from students whose education is impacted by inaccessible web content and ways faculty and staff can improve online course materials:

Accessibility Compliance

LWTech is committed to providing accessible information in compliance with the following federal and state laws (except where doing so would impose an undue burden on the college)

Federal Laws

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 

Prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in programs and activities that receive federal funding. 29 U.S.C § 794(a) 

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Title II prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in all public entities, including public colleges and universities, regardless of whether they receive federal funding. 42 U.S.C. § 12132 

Title III of the ADA Prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in places of public accommodation, including private postsecondary institutions. 42 U.S.C. §§ 12181(7)(J), 12182(a) 

For a great summary and more detailed discussion of how these laws impact higher education, review “Legal Obligations for Accessibility (Links to an external site.)” by UDL on Campus.  

Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 

Section 508 specifically addresses accessibility of electronic and information technology for federal agencies (many states, like WA, have developed policies that support Section 508 standards).   

Section 508 establishes requirements for electronic and information technology developed, maintained, procured, or used by the Federal government. Section 508 requires Federal electronic and information technology to be accessible to people with disabilities, including employees and members of the public.   

While Section 508 does not always apply to programs receiving federal funding, it is important to be aware of its requirements and scope since many states have developed policies that support or mirror federal policies such as this one.  

Washington State Policies  

SBCTC Policy 30.20.3B  

The Washington State Board for Community & Technical Colleges adopted a policy on Accessible Technology that requires community and technical colleges to provide appropriate, effective, and integrated access to technology for students, employees, and external community members.   

The Committee for Accessible Technology Oversight (CATO) was formed in response to this policy and will be working with the system colleges to support each school as they work to come into compliance with this policy. This training is also a result of the approval of this policy.   

WATech Policy 188  

Policy 188 requires all state agencies in Washington to identify an IT Accessible Technology Coordinator and develop policy and procedures that support accessible technology for individuals with disabilities. While this policy is not as far-reaching as the SBCTC policy (WaTech policies only apply to business and administrative applications -- instructional, library, and research are encouraged to comply but are not required), it still impacts WA Community and Technical Colleges. If you'd like to explore how WaTech Policy 188 compares to the SBCTC policy, review these Talking Points.  

From SBCTC Accessibility Mirco-Courses Introduction

Student Rights at Lake Washington Institute of Technology

Students at LWTech have the right to accessible information and materials as per federal and state laws and guidelines. Students with disabilities can access reasonable accommodations for their classes as per ADA, Section 504, and WA State RCWs. 

Grievance Reporting at LWTech  

For concerns or complaints with disability accommodations, students can contact the Disability Support Services office by emailing dss@lwtech.edu or calling (425) 739-8360 x2525 

Students with disabilities who need to report a complaint with accessibility and/or a bias incident may do so at LWTech by going to LWTech.edu/reporting 

Grievance Reporting – Office of Civil Rights 

Students who feel their rights have been violated as an individual with a disability can file a complaint with the Washington State Office of the Attorney General or the federal Office of Civil Rights  

Explore Digital Accessibility at LWTech