WebCT Accessibility Interest Group

Campus Information Technologies and Educational Services (CITES) and Disability Resources and Educational Services (DRES)

University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign

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Teleconference Information

Date: 2005-05-25

Time: 1:00 PM


Date: Wednesday May 25
Time: 1:00 - 2:00 CST (Chicago Local Time)
Phone: 217 265-6999

Suggested topics:

1. Update on Freedom Scientific answer regarding tabbing issue
2. Update on Philip's and Robert's findings regarding language change problem.
3. Report about the test server and accounts for interested parties.
4. Update on Robert's effort for incorporating extended time feature in students' profiles.
5. Report about online documentation of the WebCT version running on demo server; specifically information about extended time testing.
6. Report about the meeting with the instructor of Spanish course at UIUC.
7. Discuss reported problem by Melanie about Jaws behavior in WebCT CE environment.
8. WebCT conference in San Francisco from July 18th through 22nd.



Kim Wilcox
Philip Kragnes
Robert Dumas
Jeff Hiles
Jon Gunderson
Hadi Bargi Rangin

David Schwarte
Melanie Thornton

1. JAWS tabbing issue
RD: We have contacted JAWS and provided them with a test
server for tersting.
HR: Have they started testing?
RD: Test server was setup last week, I don't know who at FS is
working problem

2. Philip's and Robert's findings regarding language change
PK: I could not find much information
RD: I couldn't find much either
PK: We want to stay with standards
RD: I fowarded this to the developers, there are change
requests in for the language change markup

3. Test server
HR: Test accounts are available
RD: CE 6 and version 4 use the same code base
RD: Please put issues in the discussion board
HR: Sometime we create sample code, but webct is too complicated

4. Extended Time
RD: This is a high priority, there have been several other
request for this feature, it will be 2 releases away

5. Testing on-line documentation
HR: WIll there be documentation on accessibility and
accessibility techniques
RD: There are few sections on building accessible coureses, it
is at a top level so it will be highly visible.
RD: It does mention the problem of timed tests
RD: I would love to have people in this group contribute to
this documentation, especially how to explain to people on the
RD: I would forward to technical communication groups
HR: I will look into the documentation
PK: I can do some after July 1st
HR: I will do my best, to add to on-line accessibility
RD: This is not a development issue, so it is easir to get

6. Spanish course at UIUC
JG: Update on spanish course
K: What about the audio file
JG: We added a link to play the audio file in an external
audio player
HR: Students without disabilities were also asking for a way
for the external player
JG: This is something to add to the best practices document
RD: We could add it as a tip when people are working with
RD: I tried to take the exam with JAWS and it was nearly
RD: There are two frames and when you save the quiz the cursor
goes to the next frames and are stuckk there
RD: It puts you in "no mans" land, I wrote this up and
contacted the project manager for CE
RD: I made it clear that this needs to be solved and I am
putting in a change request
RD: This may take a little work to find out how to make it
work with the screen reader
PK: Something like "Turn off" progress frame in WebCT
RD: It has been a part of the design for a while.  I am not
sure why it is done that way.
HR: Can something be done with the status line
K: Sometime people move to the next question before they
answer the current quesiton.  It is a way to show sighted
students once they what they have not done
RD: Maybe something that linearizes well, like a list of
questions not done at the bottom of the page
K: CE 3?
RD: I went back and the framing issue was still there.  There
were links in that version that would allow you to go to the
RD: We need to set these up as headers
HR: The questions are header level 2 which is very nice
HR: DO you work with QUestion Mark?
RD: Yes
HR: We wante an icon to indicate whether a question has been
ansered or not.
RD: That was my first proposal, to add some type of indication
near the test for the questions
RD: This is a fundamental part of what students are doing with
WebCT, and so this page should be a stellar player in

7. Discuss WebCT test server?
K: How much has been done looking at the accessibility?
HR: I was trying to work with WebCT, but the system is very
frustrating.  Many crashes.
HR: Just trying to download spanish class took all afternoon,
since the file dialog manager was so hard to understandf
HR: Sometime I need to deal with 14 frames, it is not a
pleasant experience
RD: I throw a fit here about the frames, most are hidden, and
there are applets
RD: They are looking at ways to fix this problem, and I have
some people in my group prototyping a frameless version
PK: I think the interface that is somewhere inbetween a html
page and a software application
PK: We have been looking at WebCT as a series of components
and make a list of these things
RD: We also need to prioritize these problems
HR: We have a white paper and we could you use
PK: When I look at the white paper, I don't know what
component is this an issue in webCT
K: Our users are using verison 3, any change more that a year
or so out our users would kill us.
K: Is there a list of fixes in version 3
RD: I could did up the documentation on changes between vista
2 and 3, and the customer requests for accessibility
enhancements and whether they were implemented or not

8. WebCT conference
K: I don't know if anyone from here is coming, I am not going
HR: I would like to get together with developers
RD: Developers don't go to the conference, but I will make
sure that Chloe and I meet with you.  Chloe is someone who

9. Problems with the demo server
HR: I see most of the same problems in the whitepaper, and a
few more
RD: Laughs
HR: I tried to develop an assignment, I put the JAWS cursor in
the field and then it put the information in the score edit
box.  I thought it was me, but I tried several times, I am not
sure what is going.
K: Where you ion the build tab?
HR: Yes I think so.

10. Providing feedback to WebCT
K: Is there a list of features
RD: I have added every feature to webCT demo server, we could
go through them
RD: What are the most commonly used tools?
K: Assessments and components

11. Next meeting and group tasks
a. June 6th at 1:00 CST
b. Working group members are asked to prioritize modules
related to importance to accessibility and identfoy modules
that they would like to assess for accessibility
c. When reviewing a module note not only accessibility
problems, but also features that help improve accessibility
that could be used in other parts of the application and
features or proceedures that could be added to the documentation

Jon Gunderson, Ph.D., ATP

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