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How to effectively collaborate with Vendors?

Proposal No: 2985

Bios & Handouts


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

Disability Area:          

Topic Area:                  

Length of Session (in hours): 2-hrFormat: Lecture Expertise Level: Intermediate Type of session: General Conference

Summary of Session

In this panel discussion accessibility specialists from University of Washington, North Carolina University, University of Montana, Ohio State University, and University of Colorado will share their views and discuss how to effectively collaborate with vendors and produce tangible results.


We preferably want to purchase accessible products for our campuses but unfortunately, accessibility is not part of the design, implementation and Quality Assurance processes for most product development by vendors and consequently many products enter the market and are purchased are not accessible. Some universities have considered accessibility as part of the product testing and evaluation in the RFP processes. They even test the product independently for accessibility and identify all the shortcomings. Now, the question is what should we do when there is no viable alternative for the product being purchased? Should the accessibility be a deal breaker? We very much like to say yes but in reality, it doesn’t work as campus needs the product and unfortunately there is no alternative product to consider. We believe collaboration is the solution. We usually bring the purchasing department and vendors together to come up with an accessibility plan that could lead to accessibili


  1. How to engage campus administrators in accessibility.
  2. How to develop a plan for collaboration.
  3. How to run and produce results from collaborations.

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