As the jury stated: “This year’s D&I Grants were yet again full of great project ideas and wholeheartedly embraced our wish to push the limits. During last week’s pitches, the grant applicants had the opportunity to present their project idea to the D&I Advisory Council”
Six out of eleven submitted proposals were selected by the President Rianne Letschert, on behalf of Maastricht University’s Executive Board and based on the recommendations voiced by the Advisory Council Diversity & Inclusivity. They assessed the proposals in the context of relevance to the D&I policy and overall UM strategy, plan of execution (feasibility, budget), impact/expected results and the added value for interfaculty and student/staff cooperation.
In the proposal, we stressed the need to investigate the options for optimal digital accessibility of content the university offers to students and thus improving the student learning experience. Think of (library) resources students need to search and read to prepare for their educational activities and exams, but also content offered in Canvas (the learning management system) or assessment tools. Part of the project will focus on testing tools to make reading easier (text-to-speech tools for students with visual impairments or dyslexia). But we will also pay attention to informing teaching staff to create better accessible educational material.
The library will carry out this project in close cooperation with Disability Support, the MBIC Language lab and the UnliMited Network.
Invitation to participate
Are you or do you know students or staff members who use or are looking for tools to better read content offered for educational purposes? Please contact us so we can use your experiences or invite your for tests which will be part of the project.
In the context of the 2022 Open Education Week an interview on the topic of digital accessibility (in Dutch) with project leader Gaby Lutgens was published.
Presentation at EPIC!
The UM library will present on the digital accessibility project at EPIC: the Educational Pioneers and Innovators Conference of 2022, providing higher education professionals from around the globe the opportunity to share knowledge on and experience with the digital transformation and innovation with technology in higher education.
Other UM contributions will pay attention to lessons from a lockdown (by EDLAB), YUFE and the Open & Online incentive scheme project on (blended learning environment for) Medical Dutch.