El Café de 3ipunt: talking about accessibility with Brickfield Education Labs
On Thursday December 2, took place the first Café de 3ipunt. On this occasion Laia J. Canet (Consultant) and Pau Plana (CEO of 3ipunt) discussed the importance of accessibility of content in Moodle, why it is important and how to improve it.
Brickfield Education Labs is one of our partners and their Accessibility Kit is a Certified Moodle Integration.
The content of the session is useful whether you are already on your way to improving the accessibility of your courses or just starting out.
Below we have recapped what was discussed and questions that were covered during the session. You can also check out the transcript and recording of the webinar.
Let’s start by defining accessibility in the web environment: everything we create – the web and all resources – must be usable and accessible to any user. The ideal is to be able to offer as many alternatives as possible, so that each person can choose the alternative that suits them best.
As mentioned at the beginning, Moodle 3.11 includes the basic version of the Brickfield Accessibility Kit into the Moodle core. The Accessibility Kit is a certified Moodle integration that allows both, teachers and administrators who create courses and activities in Moodle, to have tools to check the accessibility of their courses. The method is based on:
- Finding existing problems with the content that require improvement.
- Fixing the problems automatically.
- Futureproof the content by improvements in Moodle for teachers and administrators.
Laia’s recommendations for creating accessible courses in Moodle
Here are the recommendations that were shared in the webinar for accessible education:
- Create a simple and clear structure for your course. Always use the same one.
- Use headings to give structure to your content. Remember that they have to follow a logical and hierarchical order.
- Use fonts that are easy to read and at a suitable size.
- Make sure there is good contrast in both text and images.
- Do not use colour as the only element to give meaning. Use text and icons as well, for example.
- Create lists with the text editor tools.
- Links should have a good description (no “click here”) and open in the same window or warn if in a new window.
- Images should have a meaningful description appropriate to the context and their didactic purpose.
- Videos should have subtitles. Check them if they have been created automatically.
- It is better to use content in HTML or Word format rather than PDF.
Here is a brief summary of the main questions that came up during the talk.
How does Brickfield help us? How can I use the plugin?
You can use the basic version of the Accessibility Kit in any instance of Moodle 3.11. Just register and activate the Accessibility Review block in the course you want to review. The Accessibility Kit helps you identify the main accessibility issues in your Moodle content. In addition, the Premium and Enterprise versions allow you to easily fix these problems and convert files to other formats.
I understand that Brickfield will help to analyse the accessibility of our resources, as well as giving guidelines to create more inclusive content, and in the Enterprise versions it will allow the conversion to alternative formats. What is not clear to me, yet, is on what resources does Brickfield allow to create these alternative formats? What file types are affected?
The accessibility check is performed on all content generated with Moodle tools.
Regarding file conversion, any file can be converted to:
Text files such as Word, TXT and HTML.
Audio files in MP3 format with different speeds.
Electronic books including Kindle and ePub formats
Digital files in Braille.
For example, is the linking activated when the block is added, or with some version of Brickfield?
The tool to manage the opening of links is available from the Premium version of the Kit.
Is it possible that I don’t see the Accessibility Kit on the Brickfield page?
The basic version of the Accessibility Kit is available in any instance of Moodle 3.11. If you would like to learn more about the different versions and features, feel free to request a free demo session.
Does Brickfield parse PDF’s? Does it allow downloading of PDFs in alternative formats?
The Accessibility Kit does not analyse the accessibility of the PDF document. The Enterprise version can convert PDF files to any other text, audio, eBook or Braille format.
We hope you found the first Café by 3ipunt interesting, see you in the next one!