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PDF in the Classroom: The Future of Digital Textbooks

| Proposal No: 1978

Bios & Handouts


  • Karen McCall, Accessible Document Design Consultant, Karlen Communications

Disability Area:          

Topic Area:                

Length of Session (in hours): 1-hrFormat: Lecture Expertise Level: Intermediate Type of session: Not provided

Summary of Session

This session is an overview of how the PDF/UA standard for accessible digital content will impact the availability of accessible textbooks and assist alternate format production centres in providing differently accessible versions of accessible PDF course material.


With the implementation of the PDF/UA or Universal Access standard, the evolution of accessible digital content reaches another milestone. For the first time there is an opportunity for students to access accessible digital PDF versions of textbooks at the same time others access the same content. For alternate format production centres, this means that content comes to them ready to be made differently accessible.


  1. PDF/UA is an itnernational standard for accessible PDF
  2. PDF/UA means that there is a consistency in doucment
  3. Potential impact on alternate format production centres

Speaker Bio(s)

Karen McCall

Karen McCall, M.Ed. is the owner of Karlen Communications. She has been working in the field of accessible document design for over ten years and has written several books on creating and working with various document formats including Word, PowerPoint and PDF. She is currently working on the fourth edition of her book “Accessible and Usable PDF Documents: Techniques for Document Authors.” Karen is a Canadian delegate to the ISO PDF/UA committee. Her current activities include creating the PdF and the User Experience Survey for people with disabilities using adaptive technology and advocating for a global inclusive quality education standard.


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