Have you taken advantage of OBU’s newest accessibility resource yet? Starting in Summer 2020, there were some new icons on your Moodle courses. These are icons from Blackboard Ally, a new plugin for Moodle that is designed to help you meet accessibility requirements.
Learn more about Ally’s key features.
Which icon is for Alternative Formats?
The Stylised ‘A’ Icon with a downward facing arrow to the left is for Alternative Formats.
This is the icon that both students and staff can see. Clicking on this icon allows you to download alternative versions of a File resource. For example, if an instructor uploads a Word document to Moodle, Ally provides the opportunity to download it in other formats right from the course screen.
What types of Alternative Formats are available using Ally?
When you click on the Alternative Formats icon for a valid resource, a list of available formats will appear.
Quoted below is the Blackboard Ally guidance on Alternative Formats, including the types of files that Ally reads and what types can be requested.
Ally provides alternative formats for these file types:
- PDF files,
- Microsoft Word files,
- Microsoft Powerpoint files,
- OpenOffice/LibreOffice files,
- Uploaded HTML files.
These alternative formats can be generated:
- OCR’d version (for scanned documents),
- Tagged PDF (currently for Word, Powerpoint and OpenOffice/LibreOffice files),
- Mobile-friendly HTML,
- Electronic Braille,
- BeeLine Reader.
How do I access Accessibility Feedback and Reports?
Staff have more options to view accessibility scores and reports. There are ‘gauges’ icons that appear next to resources that link to feedback resources and a full report available in the Navigation Tray.
How do I use the ‘gauges’ icons?
These icons, in the shape of a fuel gauge, show you at a glance whether a file or other resource is accessible. These gauges also appear next to any images you include on the course. An accessible resource will have a green ‘full’ gauge and a resource that needs more work will be either orange or red and show as less ‘full’.
Blackboard Ally has further guidance on accessibility scores, an except is included below.
Low (0-33%): Needs help! There are severe accessibility issues.
Medium (34-66%): A little better. The file is somewhat accessibile and needs improvement.
High (67-99%): Almost there. The file is accessibile but more improvements are possible.
Perfect (100%): Perfect! Ally didn’t identify any accessibility issues but further improvements may still be possible.
What happens when I click on the ‘gauges’ icons?
Clicking on this icon will open a side panel that explains the score, gives guidance on how to increase your score, and if possible will allow you to apply a fix directly from the panel.
What is the Accessibility Report?
In the Navigation Tray (opened using the pink ‘hamburger’ icon in the top left corner) near the bottom there is a new ‘Accessibility Report’ button. Clicking on this will pull up the full report for the whole module. This report has a more detailed view of what issues you may need to fix and offers the opportunity to do so directly from the screen. If the fix needs to be applied on Moodle rather than on Ally, clicking on the links will take you to the relevant section on the course.