Accessibility in Blackboard

Blackboard is fully committed to delivering product experiences that conform to the highest levels of global accessibility standards. Towson University’s Blackboard Support Team knows that accessibility is imperative, not an afterthought.

All Blackboard products are designed and developed with the internally recognized Web Content Accessibility (WCAG) Guidelines 2.0 Level AA as well as the Section 508 standards in the United States. Blackboard is becoming more accessible, and TU's Blackboard environment has 3rd party integrations that some professors utilize. Learn more about the 3rd party vendor accessibility information (PDF) and about the importance of accessibility in education. If you have questions, please contact TU Blackboard Support

Blackboard Accessibility Tool 

Blackboard Ally is an accessibility checker integrated within Blackboard. This tool gauges the accessibility of uploaded the documents/files including feedback on how to improve the accessibility and how to provide alternative formats of content to students. Using an accessibility checker supports diverse student needs at TU through inclusive design and learner preferences. 

Please Note: At this time, Blackboard Ally will only check the accessibility of uploaded files - Excel documents and text entered into the textboxes will not be checked or have an indicator.

Resources for Instructors

Watch this webinar on Blackboard accessibility, and view this checklist for course accessibility. Learn how to support diverse student needs through inclusive design and learner preferences in the June 12, 2020 demo hosted by Blackboard Ally's Product Manager.

Using the Blackboard Accessibility Tool: Bb Ally

Tips for Making Your Course Accessible:

  • Write plainly by keeping your sentences short and using simple words. Learn how to write accessible content.
  • Use descriptive headings and apply heading formatting.
  • Avoid using font styles, color, bold, italics, underline or strikethrough to emphasize content.
  • Use purposeful images and include alternative text to those images.
  • Make descriptive links when linking outside your course.
  • Use lists instead of tables whenever possible.
  • Properly list content using bullet points or numbered lists.
  • All videos should be captioned.
  • Format your files and documents to be accessible. 
  • Provide students with clear expectations, instructions and directions for all assignments and tests.

Resources for Students