Accommodating Disabilities and Different Learning Styles

There are many resources available to assist faculty and staff with accommodating both students with documented disabilities and students with different learning styles. A disability is a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity. Some examples include learning, visual, hearing, mobility, psychiatric and health impairments. A learning style is a preferential way in which a student absorbs, processes, comprehends and retains information. Examples of learning styles include: visual, auditory, reading/writing and kinesthetic.

One of the keys to accommodating different disability types and learning styles is by using principles of universal design, which is the design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design. When universal design is incorporated into course design, ALL students benefit!

The Washington DO-IT Center is a national resource that promotes inclusion and success for people with disabilities. The organization offers many helpful resources on universal design and creating accessible online courses. Here are a few pages to start exploring:

The Washington DO-IT Center offers a resource known as The Faculty Room. This is a space for faculty and administrators at postsecondary institutions to learn about how to create on-site and online courses that maximize the learning of all students, including those with disabilities.

BGSU Resources

The Center for Faculty Excellence offers a comprehensive webpage devoted to making courses accessible. The Web Accessibility Guidelines includes information on:

  • Web accessibility resources
  • Accessibility checkers
  • Tips for teaching accessible online courses
  • A guide for making Canvas courses accessible
  • Tips for creating accessible Microsoft Office documents
  • Instructions for captioning videos

Additionally, the CFE offers information on inclusive pedagogy, and reaffirms BGSU’s commitment to providing equal educational opportunity, regardless of race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, color, national origin, ancestry, genetic information, pregnancy, religion, age, disability, or status as a veteran.

Information Technology Services provides a webpage of helpful resources on Remote Teaching. This page includes information on:

  • Providing course content
  • Facilitating and monitoring student interaction
  • Student assessments
  • Teaching support for online classes

Online web accessibility trainings are offered on the following topics:

  • Multimedia accessibility
  • Canvas accessibility
  • W3C standards
  • BGSU’s web accessibility policy