Vendor collaboration: From IT Accessibility Evaluation to Designing with Accessibility


Scheduled at 9:15am in Lakehouse on Thursday, November 16 (2017).



  • Hadi Rangin, IT Accessibility Specialist, University of Washington
  • Dan Comden, Access Technology Consultant, University of Washington

Session Details

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


Almost all products that campuses purchase are inaccessible and fail an accessibility evaluation. In this session, we will share with you in detail how we test and evaluate an IT product for accessibility as well as how we work with vendors to fix and enhance the accessibility of their products.


Despite increasing awareness and understanding of accessibility by vendors and purchasing decision makers in higher education, most IT products are still inaccessible or have severe accessibility problems at the time of purchase.

We work with the responsible service owners and managers and ensure that accessibility is addressed in the contract. However, this does not guarantee the accessibility of the respective products as vendors lack the knowledge and experience of Universal Design, accessibility, and coding best practices.

We work closely with service owners/managers and vendors to test, evaluate, and discuss potential solutions for the issues found with their product. This allows them to learn about accessibility and Universal Design which can be utilized in future versions of their product.

In this session, we will share how we test and evaluate a product for accessibility and explore the process of transitioning from basic testing to redesigning with accessibility in mind.


  1. How to Initiate a Collaboration in Preparation for Accessibility Testing and Evaluation
  2. How to Conduct Accessibility Testing and Create Documentation
  3. How to Communicate with Vendors and Achieve the Ultimate Outcome

Disability Areas

Topic Areas

Assistive Technology, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Hadi Rangin

Hadi Rangin is an Information Technology Accessibility Specialist at the University of Washington in Seattle. In this position he is tasked with improving access to information technologies for all users, including those with disabilities. To do this Hadi works with and advises software engineers, designers, administrators, and purchasers on accessible implementation techniques, quality assurance, and best practices. Some of the higher education vendors Hadi has collaborated with include Blackboard, Blackboard Collaborate, Desire2Learn, Moodle, Canvas, Elsevier, Ebsco, Ex-Libris, PeopleSoft, Microsoft, Google, Qualtrics, Ellucian, Workday, ServiceNow, Trumba, Innotas, Zoom, and many more.

Additionally, Hadi teaches the Universal Design Principles for Online Learning as well as the Certificate of Professional Development course in Information Accessibility Design and Policy for the University of Illinois.

Hadi's educational background is in Computer Science with a focus on Network Management and Human-Computer Interfaces. As someone who is blind, Hadi brings a wealth of personal and professional experiences to the many spheres he works within.

Dan Comden

Dan manages the Access Technology Center (ATC) at the University of Washington. The ATC is a UW system-wide resource within central IT that works directly with students, faculty, and staff with disabilities who need to access computing resources. The ATC also help web and application developers make exciting and accessible online resources. In his free time, Dan plays with cars and rides his bike.