University Policy Office

1.15 Accessible Information and Communication Technology Policy

Effective: 01/15/2018
Senate Proposal: No
Responsible University Officer: University President
Responsible Office: Institutional Equity and Inclusion

Policy Statement

Michigan Technological University is dedicated to providing equal opportunity for all students, employees, and members of the public, including those with disabilities, who access our services, programs, and activities. This includes providing equal access to University information and communication technologies (ICT) such as university systems, websites, electronic documents, and educational and training materials.

Policy Requirements

This policy extends to the creation, procurement, management, or dissemination of ICT.

Purpose

This policy is in accordance with federal and state laws including the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), and the Amendments Act of 2008, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 508 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act as amended. The policy also supports Board of Trustees Policy 5.1 Prohibition of Discrimination and Harassment, and 5.2 Equal Opportunity.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is civil rights legislation signed in 1990 to prohibit discrimination based on a person’s disability. The ADA Amendments Act of 2008 clarifies the definition of “disability” and broadens the number of individuals who are eligible for the protections of the ADA, including accommodations for temporary disabilities.

  • Rehabilitation Act passed in 1973 made it unlawful to discriminate against persons with disabilities in all federally assisted programs, services, and employment. Section 504 stipulates that "no qualified individual with a disability in the United States shall be excluded from, denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that receives federal financial assistance.” Section 508 is a 1998 amendment to the Rehabilitation Act that requires ICT developed, procured, maintained, or used by federal agencies to be accessible by people with disabilities.

In all cases, if achieving accessibility is either not possible or would constitute an undue hardship, then plans to provide equally effective alternative access must be developed, documented, and communicated.

Scope

All members of the university community whose duties include creating, procuring, managing, or disseminating ICT are responsible for ensuring that they are compliant with this policy and their related procedures and guidelines.

Contacts

Institutional Equity and Inclusion - 906-487-3310

Dean of Students - 906-487-2212

Information Technology - 906-487-1111

Center for Teaching and Learning - 906-487-3000

University Marketing and Communications - 906-487-2354

Definitions

Accessible — A person with a disability is afforded the opportunity to acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same services as a person without a disability in an equally effective and equally integrated manner, with substantially equivalent ease of use. A person with a disability must be able to obtain the information as fully, equally, and independently as a person without a disability. Although this might not result in identical ease of use compared to that of persons without disabilities, it still must ensure equal opportunity to the educational benefits and opportunities afforded by the technology and equal treatment in the use of such technology.

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) — Electronic systems and equipment, and information resources contained therein, used in the creation, conversion, communication, duplication, storage, or display of data or information.  This definition strives to capture the broad spectrum of current and emerging technology.

Accessible Information and Communication Technology (ICT) — Information technology that is designed, developed, or procured to be usable by, and therefore accessible to people with disabilities, including those who use assistive technologies.

Assistive Technology — Any equipment that is used to enhance the functional capabilities of students and employees with disabilities. Examples of assistive technologies include screen reading software, text magnifiers, and speech recognition software.

Disability — A physical or cognitive impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

Equally Effective — The alternative format or medium communicates the same information in as timely a fashion as does the original format or medium.

Information Resources — Includes web pages, documents, videos, images, databases and other digital materials.

Reasonable Accommodation — Any change in the work or educational environment or in the way things are customarily done that enables an individual with a disability to enjoy equal employment or educational opportunities.  Reasonable accommodations are provided upon request, except when such accommodations would cause an undue hardship or would fundamentally alter the nature or operation of the business or course of study

Undue Hardship — With respect to accessibility accommodations, undue hardship refers not only to financial difficulty, but to accommodations that are unduly extensive, substantial, or disruptive, or those that would fundamentally alter the nature or operation of the business or course of study.

Universal Design — The proactive design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.

Usability — Refers to how easily, effectively, and efficiently users can interact with a product or system to achieve their goals, and how satisfied they are with the experience.

Responsibilities

Institutional Equity and Inclusion — Ensures compliance with applicable laws and University policy. Works with employees and visitors to determine accommodations.

Dean of Students Office — Works with students to determine accommodations.

Information Technology — Provides technical expertise and facilitates procurement of ICT in support of the accessible ICT procedures referenced in this policy.

University Marketing and Communications — With assistance from responsible webmasters and CMS liaisons, ensures public websites meet standards referenced in web accessibility procedures.

Accessible Technology Working Group (ATWG) — Develops and supports procedures for web accessibility, accessible documents and media, and accessible ICT procurement. Coordinates training efforts to support those responsible for creating and disseminating ICT.

Accessible Technology Coordinator — Chairs the ATWG, and guides and supports efforts and recommendations of ATWG.

Procedures

Web Accessibility Procedures

Documents and Instructional Materials Procedures

ICT Procurement Procedures

Forms                                  

Employee Request for Accommodation Form

ADA/Section 504 Grievance Form

Appendices

Grievance Procedure (Section 504

Student Disability Services

Student Disability Policy

History

Adopted:  01/15/2018  Approved by the Office of the President