Teaching about Accessibility in Computing and IT Courses: A Capacity-building Institute

Bios & Handouts

Scheduled at 9:00am in Meadowbrook II on Tuesday, November 13.



  • Sheryl Burgstahler, Director, Accessible Technology Services, University of Washington

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 5-6-hr
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: Beginner
  • Type of session: Pre-conference


Learn how accessible/inclusive/universal design and other proactive design practices can be integrated within computing and IT courses and thus increase the pool of future computing and IT professionals that know how to develop accessible technology.


Many Accessing Higher Ground attendees—in part to address diversity and equity issues or to meet their campus obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act and its 2008 Amendments—struggle to encourage IT companies to make their products accessible to individuals with disabilities. On the other hand, some companies are complaining that they cannot find computing and IT professionals that know how to design accessible products.

Presenters and panelists will share how accessibility/inclusive/universal design topics can be integrated into your computing/IT course or how you can encourage faculty in these fields to include these topics in their courses. They will bring in perspectives and promising practices from the field. Discussions will be facilitated to explore key issues related to promoting the teaching of inclusive design strategies in computing and IT courses at all levels, but particularly in postsecondary environments.

Resources will also be shared.


  1. It is important that IT companies hire professionals who know how to design accessible products.
  2. IT faculty can help meet this need by including accessible/inclusive/universal design topics in their courses.
  3. IT faculty can help meet this need by including accessible/inclusive/universal design topics in their courses

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Including Accessibility in Curriculum, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Sheryl Burgstahler

Dr. Sheryl Burgstahler founded and directs the DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology) Center and the ATC (Access Technology Center) as part of her role as Director of Accessible Technology Services at the University of Washington (UW). These centers promote (1) the support the success of students with disabilities in postsecondary education and careers and (2) the development of facilities, IT, services, and learning activities that are welcoming and accessible to individuals with disabilities. The ATC focuses efforts at the UW; the DO-IT Center reaches national and international audiences with the support of federal, state, corporate, foundation, and private funds. Dr. Burgstahler is an affiliate professor in the UW College of Education. She developed and taught the Accessibility and Compliance in Online Education online course offered by Rutgers University and currently teaches graduate courses in applications of universal design in higher education at City University of New York and Saint Louis University.