Example policies in higher education

This page provides a list of information technology (IT) accessibility policies in higher education. This list is not intended to be comprehensive. Rather, it is intended to serve as a resource for institutions who are developing or considering developing their own policies. For information about the UW Non-Discrimination Policy, consult the Legal and Policy Requirements page of the current website.

  • California State University Accessible Technology Initiative
    The most ambitious system-wide initiative of its kind, each of the 23 campuses in the CSU system are required by the Chancellor’s Office to meet timelines and provide deliverables in the areas of web accessibility, instructional materials accessibility, and accessible electronic and information technology procurement.
  • University of California Information Technology Policy
    This UC system-wide policy is a relatively recent addition to this list, having been approved by the Office of the President in August 2013. The policy text includes a requirement that all UC locations adhere to the UC IT Accessibility Requirements, a separate document that requires conformance with the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 at Level AA. The policy also requires all UC locations to “develop, purchase and/or acquire, to the extent feasible, hardware and software products that are accessible to people with disabilities.”
  • Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Act (IITAA)
    The IITAA is a state law that requires Illinois agencies and universities to ensure that their web sites, information systems, and information technologies are accessible to people with disabilities. It is accompanied by standards, implementation guidelines, and procurement recommendations.
  • MIT Web and software Accessibility Policies and Guidelines
    MIT provides a full suite of documents and resources, including policy statements, as well as checklists for purchasing and developing software and web-based products
  • Purdue University Web Accessibility Policy
    This policy, issued in 2010, includes detailed compliance requirements and timelines over a four year period. One of the requirements is for each college, school, department, program, or unit of Purdue University to submit an annual report to their campus Equal Opportunity Officer summarizing their accessibility efforts and accomplishments over the past year, as well as their goals for the upcoming year.
  • University of Minnesota Accessibility of Information Technology
    This website includes the official policy, plus detailed standards for web, hardware, and software accessibility. The standards include specific techniques and technical notes.
  • North Carolina State University Information and Communication Technology Accessibility Regulation
    This official university regulation was originally passed as a web accessibility regulation in 2006, but was revised in August 2011. The revised regulation expands coverage to include all information and communication technologies (ICT), not just websites. It delineates between, and provides different requirements for, ICT resources that are new, active, and inactive. The NCSU policy is one of the few policies that explicitly includes an enforcement mechanism for non-compliance (see Section 4 – Remedy).
  • The Ohio State University Web Accessibility Policy
    Ohio State’s web accessibility policy requires any website conducting university business to meet the university Minimum OSU Web Accessibility Standards (both documents are in PDF).
  • Oregon State University Policy on Information Technology Accessibility
    This policy is being introduced in phases. The first phase, adopted in August 2011, covers website and web-based content accessibility, including electronic documents and multimedia. This phase of the policy requires that all new and revised content comply with WCAG 2.0 Level AA. Additional phases of the policy will include, at a minimum; hardware, software and the procurement of these IT products.
  • Penn State Policy and Accessibility Guidelines
    Penn State’s web accessibility policy requires that all new web pages comply with WCAG 2.0 Level AA. Their policy was developed in response to legal action by National Federation of the Blind. Penn State also includes accessibility requirements in their Policy on Video Productions.
  • University of Texas at Austin Web Accessibility Policy
    The UT-Austin policy is supported by an extensive set of internal services for educating web developers, compliance checking, and user testing. Each university website that provides entry to members of the public must contain a “Web Accessibility” link to the policy. The policy also explicitly identifies a high-level Accessibility Coordinator who is responsible for monitoring compliance and providing training to Web publishers and developers. Accessibility is integrated into the larger set of Web Publishing Guidelines.
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison Web Accessibility Policy
    UW-Madison’s policy was originally passed in 2000, and may have been the first of its kind in higher education. Now in its third revision, it continues to be a model policy document.

Additional resources on accessibility policy

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