February 6, 2013
Courseload Releases First eText Platform with Accessible Collaborative Features
Courseload, the leading innovator in the aggregation, delivery and use of digital course materials in higher education, announced the release of Courseload Version 2.3 (Courseload v2.3), the first eText platform to provide a single, unified collaborative experience for faculty and students of all abilities.
Beyond delivering accessible collaboration features, guided by Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG), Courseload v2.3 establishes a basis for continual improvement toward the ultimate goal of born-accessible content, technology, and experiences.
“Since our inception, Courseload has created solutions that remove barriers to the adoption of digital course materials, supporting enhanced access and success in higher education. This release enables our partners to address a pervasive challenge to campus-wide adoption of digital, while setting the path to a unified adaptive future,” said Steve Scott, Courseload’s Chief Technology Officer.
According to Madeleine Rothberg of The Carl and Ruth Shapiro Family National Center for Accessible Media at WGBH (NCAM), which audited this release, “Courseload has made an important commitment to providing an accessible platform for learning. They are following through on that commitment with the improvements that are now available, and a plan for future changes. Using both well-established and newer, advanced Web-accessibility techniques, they are working toward a time when students with print disabilities will use the same technology as the rest of the class.”
Last year, Courseload created an Accessibility Advisory Board (AAB) to guide its efforts to advance accessibility within higher education’s digital transformation. The AAB brings together leaders from nine universities and national advocacy and technology groups. Carlos Taylor, adaptive computer technology specialist at Ball State University and a member of Courseload’s AAB, already sees the result of that commitment. “The collaborative features within Courseload, such as the ability to write and read notes and converse with other students and faculty, are now fully accessible and allow for a level of engagement that previously didn’t exist.”
Assisted by the AAB, Courseload will continue to develop products and services with accessibility in mind. In addition, Courseload is working with publishers, content networks, and institutions to help accelerate the shift to an adaptive future, making born-accessible content available for all. “We are always interested in working with companies like Courseload who actively engage with key players and deliver on their feedback,” said Ron Stewart, member of the AAB and technology advisor to the Association on Higher Education and Disability.
Learn more at: http://www.courseload.com/accessibility
Courseload is the leading device- and content source-neutral aggregator and distributor of eTexts and digital course materials. Courseload’s approach eliminates the barriers that have impeded the print-to-digital evolution in academia while providing deep cost reductions to students and institutions and improving academic outcomes. Courseload stores materials in one central location, which enables students to learn and collaborate more successfully, provides faculty with tools and analytics that support teaching, and protects content owners from piracy and eroding revenue streams.