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Google Apps Accessibility

Proposal No: 221

Bios & Handouts


Disability Area:          

Topic Area:                

Length of Session (in hours): 1Format: Lecture Expertise Level: All Levels Type of session: General Conference

Summary of Session

ATHEN will share the results of its functional evaluation testing of Google Apps to assess their accessibility for multiple types of disabilities and will also share best practice resources for campuses who are already using Google Apps.


Google Apps provides a rich and powerful set of tools for productivity and collaboration. Many educational institutions are adopting parts of the application suite - like Google Docs, Calendar, GMail, and Chat - as their standard tools for daily work, research, and collaborations. While these tools can improve users? productivity significantly they can be a major bottleneck and hindrance for users with disabilities. Google has been improving the accessibility of Google Apps, but ensuring it is accessible to people of all types of disabilities is a challenge, especially given the complexities in delivering highly interactive Web applications. This presentation will cover the problems different populations of disabled users will encounter when using Google Apps. Additionally, best practice resources will be shared for campuses already using Google Apps.


  1. Identify areas where Google Apps presents problems for people with certain types of disabilities
  2. Discern what actions Google will need to take in order to make the Google Application Suite more accessible to all users
  3. Plan how to manage the use of Google Apps on their campus if they are already a Google Apps for Education customer

Speaker Bio(s)

Greg Kraus

Greg Kraus is the Principal Accessibility Specialist at Interactive Accessibility. He brings a breadth and depth of accessibility experience that is both engaging and transformative for organizations. Greg combines his experience of implementing accessibility at the institutional level with his technical ability to develop innovative software solutions. Greg takes a people-centered approach to accessibility – accessibility is about people who need access to products and services, and it’s about people who will be making changes to their own workflows in order to deliver accessible products and services. He meets people where they are, creates a vision for where they need to be, and then journeys with them to make it a reality. Previously Greg worked at NC State University as the IT Accessibility Coordinator. Where he developed many innovative accessibility solutions. He also led national accessibility efforts as the EDUCAUSE IT Accessibility Constituent Group Leader.