Talking to Faculty about Accessibility

Bios & Handouts Videos

Scheduled at 3:30pm in Meadowbrook I/II on Wednesday November, 16.



  • Gaeir Dietrich, Director, HTCTU

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 1-hr
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: Intermediate
  • Type of session: General Conference


How do you get faculty members interested in accessibility? How do you get them to want to create accessible documents? This session will explore lessons learned over many years of working with faculty members and share the messages that have worked best.


Many of us have faced the issue of trying to explain to faculty members what accessibility is all about and the even bigger issue of how to get them engaged in providing accessible materials. This session will explore different messages for faculty, what works and what doesn't. Over many years, we have tried different approaches until we finally found one that really works. We will share what works and what doesn't, and we will reveal the one strategy that will have faculty asking you to please train them on creating accessible documents.


  1. Explaining accessibility to faculty
  2. Using the message of "enlightened self-interest" to engage faculty in creating accessible materials
  3. Understanding Section 504 and the "fully funded" mandate

Disability Areas

Cognitive/Learning, Deaf/Hard of Hearing, Mobility, Other, Vision

Topic Areas

Alternate Format, Faculty Instruction/Accessible Course Design

Speaker Bio(s)

Gaeir Dietrich

Gaeir Dietrich is the director of the High Tech Center Training Unit of the California Community Colleges located at De Anza College in Cupertino, California. She is a nationally recognized expert in the area of alternate media and is a founding member of the AHEAD E-text Solutions Group and co-developer of the AHEAD E-text Institute. Gaeir has served on several advisory boards, including Bookshare, DIAGRAM Center, the Alternate Text Production Center, AHEAD, and the Silicon Valley Independent Living Center. She led the Veterans Resource Center project for the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office. And in 2010-2011, she served as the chair for the Federal Advisory Commission on Accessible Instructional Materials in Postsecondary Education.