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What Should You Have in Your Alternate Format Toolbox?

Proposal No: 2629

Bios & Handouts


  • Susan Kelmer, Alternate Format Access Coordinator, University of Colorado Boulder

Disability Area:          

Topic Area:                  

Length of Session (in hours): 3-hrFormat: Lecture Expertise Level: Intermediate Type of session: Not provided

Summary of Session

If you are producing alternate format as e-text, what are the tools you should have in your toolbox? We will discuss and demonstrate scanners, OCR programs, Adobe Acrobat Professional, image editors, text editors, staffing, computer equipment, ePub production software, and text-to-speech software.


Alternate Format Production can take many forms. What are the most useful tools, best practices, and production processes that are going to give you the best output from the worst documents? In the session, we talk about processes, staffing, and tracking, but also demonstrate different tools that can be used for alternate format production, with their pros and cons. Participants will be able to try some of the software in hands-on exercises with practice documents. Session will cover alternate format production of documents, but WILL NOT cover STEM materials or discussions about tactiles or Braille embossing. We will, however, discuss briefly the importance of producing text-based documents that are Braille-ready. Participants will receive a list of resources for acquiring the recommended hardware and software.


  1. What hardware do I need for alternate format production?
  2. What software do I need for alternate format production?
  3. What does staffing and process tracking look like for alternate format production?

Speaker Bio(s)

Susan Kelmer

Ms. Kelmer has been working with alternate format and accessible technology for nearly 20 years in a higher education environment. Currently she works at the University of Colorado Boulder in the Alternate Format Production and Access Center, where alternate format materials for students are produced. She also consults with other departments on campus and other campuses about alternate format and how to produce it. She has presented at multiple AHG conferences in the last sixteen years.