Why should we be concerned?


In 1998, Congress amended the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 which prohibited discrimination on the basis of disability, to require Federal agencies to make their electronic and information technology (EIT) accessible to people with disabilities. Inaccessible technology interferes with an ability to obtain and use information quickly and easily.

Section 508 was enacted to eliminate barriers in information technology, open new opportunities for people with disabilities, and encourage development of technologies that will help achieve these goals. Although Section 508 was written by and for the government, higher education authorities in many states have determined it applies to college and university systems as well. To read more about Section 508 visit the Section508.gov website.

Due to changes in assistive technologies, web design, and delivery tools, Section 508 Refresh is being developed. The "refresh" is expected to reference Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0).

Web Accessibility

Web Accessibility, as defined by the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI), means people with disabilities (visual, auditory, physical, etc.) have the legal right to perceive, understand, navigate, interact and contribute to the web.

This is especially true when it comes to education and access of online course content. At Brazosport College, we use Brightspace (by Desire2Learn or D2L) as our online learning management system. Brightspace supports the Web Accessibility initiative and follows their set accessibility guidelines (WCAG 2.0, ATAG 2.0, WAI-ARIA).

D2L also has an HTML editor which can be used to create accessible course pages (files) which can then be checked with it's Accessibility tool. 

This means the infrastructure of Brightspace may be in compliance with accessibility guidelines, but the content (files) we put into our online course may not. The best option for creating content for your course is to use D2L's HTML editor which comes with an Accessibility Checker that can help guide you through making each page accessible. Using an HTML Editor is very similar to Microsoft Word, but it creates files directly in your course which are readable using "Screen Readers".

View quick guide on how to use the Accessibility Checker in D2L. Please note as of 1/2022 the checker icon in the video (eyeball with a check-mark) is now located in the HTML Editor formatting menu in the upper left corner (view image).


American Disabilities Act - ADA (usdog.gov)
Web Accessibility Initiative - WAI (w3.org)
Web Content Accessibility Checklist - WCAG (w3.org)
Web Accessibility Training and Advocating Resources (w3.org)

Quick Links to Accessibility sections

Continue to next section: What are the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines?

Contact Information

Office Hours
7:30 AM - 5:00 PM

Matthew Siebert
Room A.202
Phone (979) 230-3436
Email Matthew.Siebert@brazosport.edu

Bryan Brown
Educational Technologist
Room A.210
Phone (979) 230-3368
Email Bryan.Brown@brazosport.edu

Linda McConnell
Director & Instructional Designer
Room A.203
Phone (979) 230-3436
Email Linda.McConnell@brazosport.edu