Annotations for All: Creating accessible and understandable annotated and marked-up content

Handouts Media

Presented at 9:15am in Plaza Court 2 on Wednesday, November 17, 2021.



  • Laura Ciporen, Digital Content Accessibility Manager, McGraw-Hill Education

Session Details

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


One of the best ways to help students think about and improve their writing is to demonstrate the process with an annotated document that includes commentary and corrections. McGraw Hill, working with student reviewers, has developed a learner- and AT-friendly solution to help all students wade through this type of complex content with ease.


In an English Composition course, students might read a paper accompanied by annotations explaining its structure and how the author gets their point across. Later, the student might encounter incorrectly-formulated sentences along with the changes made so they become grammatically correct. This sort of annotated and marked-up content is a valuable tool to help students learn to analyze what they read and improve the content they create. Visual signals typically connect a section of the writing with its associated notes. Proofreading marks concisely represent changes while preserving the original formulation. But what about students who cannot see or process those visual signals or find them overwhelming? McGraw Hill has developed a set of solutions which will be debuting in our eBooks. This session will present the challenges we needed to solve, demonstrate our solutions, and discuss how students using assistive technology were involved in the development process.


  1. Even the most relationally-complex information can be made accessible and usable.
  2. Student feedback is essential when developing a new way to present information.
  3. Front of mind must always be: how do we want students to be able to parse this content? Solution for that.

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Accessible Educational Materials, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Laura Ciporen

IAAP CPACC. JAWS certified. Creating inclusive content (with WCAG-based accessibility) for higher education since 2015.