UMOnline is committed to ensuring barrier-free access to online learning for all

UMOnline is committed to ensuring barrier-free access to online learning and UM's learning management system, Moodle. Our team provides support to faculty and staff who develop content within the LMS and any user who encounters a barrier is encouraged to contact our office. We work with vendors to continuously improve the system and welcome your feedback.

Universal design for learning and digital inclusion address a broad range of issues that are focused on making technology available to all people. By emphasizing universal design principles in the development of online, blended and face-to-face course supplements, UMOnline supports the construction of online learning experiences that take into account varying learning preferences and accessibility issues.

Key considerations in designing an accessible online learning environment are:

  • Make sure the course content is well-structured and easy to navigate.
  • Take advantage of accessibility features that are built into Moodle (tools for creating tagged headings and lists, quiz time extension options, etc.).
  • Ensure hyperlinks make sense out of context. Phrases like "click here" are problematic.
  • Caption videos and provide text transcripts for audio content.
  • Provide appropriate alternative text for images.
  • Summarize information contained in graphs and charts in the narrative body of the page.
  • Do not use color alone to convey meaning.
  • Ensure accessibility of non-Moodle content (Word, PowerPoint, PDF files). 
  • Use Ally for Moodle in your course.

Ally Plugin for Moodle LMS

The Ally Plugin automatically checks course materials against WCAG 2.1 accessibility standards and provides students with accessible alternative formats such as audio, electronic braille, ePub and tagged PDF. In addition to auto-checking course materials, it will provide guidance to educators to improve the accessibility of their course material.

You can read more about Ally for Instructors on our website. 

Contact Information

The instructional design team can help check course shells for accessibility. Please contact the Instructional Design Team to request a review.