Teaching Accessibility: Case studies of courses that include accessibility topics in their curricula

Handouts Media

Presented at 12:45pm in Cotton Creek II on Friday, November 22, 2019.



  • Howard Kramer, AHEAD
  • Terrill Thompson, Technology Accessibility Specialist, University of Washington
  • Korey Singleton, ATI Manager, George Mason University
  • Shadi Abou-Zahra, Accessibility Strategy and Technology Specialist, World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)

Session Details

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


In this session three speakers will review curricula components that they have used in classes that teach about accessibility in computer science, IT and web design courses. Specific resources that can incorporated into classes will be discussed. The third speaker will discuss curriculum resources developed by the World Wide Web Consortium.


A 2017 study by Shinohara, Kawas, Ko, and Ladner asked computing and information science faculty in the United States whether they teach accessibility-related topics and if not, why not.

Participating faculty reported the most critical barriers to teaching accessibility to be the absence of clear learning objectives and the lack of faculty knowledge about accessibility. The study reported that "[f]aculty desired resources that were specific to the areas of computing in which they teach rather than general accessibility resources and guidelines.”

Through the review of accessibility content included in existing courses, this session aims to provide resources and curricula content that faculty can use to incorporate accessibility topics into their courses on IT and web design.


  1. Educational institutions are not teaching accessibility topics in their IT and computing courses
  2. One reason is that faculty do not have access to resources that are specific to their discipline
  3. The resources and examples discussed in this talk can be used by faculty wishing to address accessibility

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Teaching about Accessibility in Curriculum, Uncategorized

Speaker Bio(s)

Howard Kramer


Terrill Thompson

Terrill Thompson is technology accessibility specialist at the University of Washington, where his work is supported in part by AccessComputing, a project funded by the National Science Foundation to increase the participation of people with disabilities.

Korey Singleton

Korey Singleton is the Assistive Technology Initiative (ATI) Manager for George Mason University (GMU). The ATI operates under Mason¹s Compliance, Diversity, and Ethics Office and is charged with guiding and implementing a university-wide strategy for addressing the electronic and information technology accessibility needs of students, staff, and faculty members with disabilities. For over 18 years, he has supported the use of assistive technology by individuals with disabilities at home, at work, and in the classroom.

Shadi Abou-Zahra

Shadi Abou-Zahra works with the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) as the Accessibility Strategy and Technology Specialist. He coordinates accessibility priorities in the W3C Strategy team, as well as international promotion, coordination, and harmonization of web accessibility standards. Shadi also maintains WAI liaisons with key stakeholders including disability, research, and standards organizations, as well as coordinates WAI outreach in Europe, accessibility evaluation techniques, and European-funded projects on accessibility.