@apurva and @christina.hendricks, I was looking at the Accessibility statement/assessment on the Ethics book (https://press.rebus.community/intro-to-phil-ethics/back-matter/accessibility-assessment/) – was the review something Rebus provided? I’m looking at it to do something similar for the Introduction to LGBTQ+ Studies text. We can do an internal review and include a similar statement and checklist, but I do like the idea of an outside entity providing that statement, so I was curious of how that was/is handled in the series.
Hi Allison! This is something we encourage all projects to have. In the case with the philosophy series, both Christina and I reviewed the books to check to see that accessibility standards had been met. Christina went through the Ethics book in particular. I believe accessibility was also something that you had kept in mind during the formatting phase, so it wasn’t at the end of the publishing process that this was visited. Our checks took place at different points in the publishing process. We looked not only at the elements listed/mentioned in the author and review guides, but also at the suggested items in the webbook accessibility checklist. We both looked at other (non-web) formats of the book as well. Christina has also been involved in the editing process, and has been able to provide a lot more feedback about accessibility of tone, language, vocabulary, in her capacity as series editor. Did you have anything to add, Christina?
I’ve seen a few other projects which had an external accessibility reviewer (in the same way that a resource might have a peer reviewer). In cases like these, the reviewer was generally an accessibility practitioner and was given a list of criteria to keep in mind during their review. Since they were experienced with these issues, in some cases, the reviewer would point out elements that might not have been in the review guide. Generally, any revisions would be implemented before release, and a team member would conduct a final check of the book in its various formats before inserting the statement with any additional notes from the reviewer into the book.
Oh, sorry–somehow I let this one slip by!
Yes, @Apurva is right about how we went about this. I have mostly been doing the accessibility checks, but the way that has been happening is through me going through accessibility requirements in the BCcampus Accessibility Toolkit and other resources when needed to help me understand accessibility requirements for things like headers, use of colour, tables, etc. To be clear, though, I haven’t done checks by using screen reader software; I have just worked to ensure the books follow best practice guidelines. That doesn’t mean they will for sure be fully accessible, and we’ve also included in our books an accessibility feedback form for people to report problems.
In terms of other aspects of accessibility, yes, I’ve read through each of the chapters before publication and done my best to try to ensure that the language would generally be accessible to an undergraduate-level audience with no background in the field, and there is little jargon (or terms of art are defined).
Hope that helps!