It is our hope that FLEX Forward can help us in achieving the benefits listed earlier. In order to do this, we have designed the resource around the following learning outcomes and intentions.
After reviewing this resource, you should be able to:
- Differentiate Accessible Education from academic accommodations;
- Describe several goals and benefits of Accessible Education;
- Apply an Accessible Education lens and process to any and all components of teaching and learning. This means:
- Anticipating barriers and
- finding ways to mediate these barriers
- to enhance access for all;
- Take note of at least 3 questions you have about Accessible Education, identify a person/location where you can ask and discuss these questions, follow-through on asking these questions, and incorporate responses into your teaching practice; and
- Reflect on how to integrate Accessible Education principles into your teaching, develop several Accessible Education teaching goals for the next 4-6 months, and take steps to put these into action.
Preparing You to Jump In!
This resource is intended to build off of strong teaching practices you’ve already developed, and to help you identify concrete steps you can take right away to further weave accessibility into your teaching context.
Building on Skills: There’s often quite a lot of overlap between innovative teaching techniques and accessibility, even if these connections are not explicitly named. As a result, it’s quite likely that you’re already incorporating teaching practices that enhance accessibility, whether you’re referring to them in this way or not!
This resource isn’t about starting from scratch, but about building on skills and techniques you’ve been honing for some time now. Our ultimate goal is for you to feel more confident in your understanding of accessibility and in your ability to apply Accessible Education principles to your teaching and learning practice.
Getting Started: While no teaching technique or practice will ever be universally accessible for all, an Accessible Education lens can be integrated into any and all approaches to teaching to mediate barriers and enhance accessibility. Given this context, we offer this resource in the spirit of sharing some new ideas alongside permission and encouragement to jump in!
You don’t need advanced training or a particular disciplinary background to get started. The single most helpful way to learn about integrating accessibility principles into your classroom is to just start innovating in a thoughtful and scholarly way. Students have waited long enough for accessible and welcoming classrooms. It’s time for us to respond!
Moving a Couple of Ideas Forward: We don’t expect you to immediately incorporate everything described here. Instead, we hope that over the course of reviewing this resource, you’ll identify and decide on a couple of new approaches to test out in your teaching over the next 4-6 months. Experiment and adapt ideas to your own disciplinary context, teaching practice, and strengths to make them most effective — and have some fun!