Review ways to make your course more accessibility-friendly during Disability Awareness Week and prepare for #CyThx 2021
CELT Teaching Tip • October 28, 2021
Tips to Make Your Course More Accessible
This week, Iowa State University has been observing Disability Awareness Week, a week devoted to educating the Cyclone community about the experience of individuals with disabilities. As an instructor, you have a direct impact on a student’s experience and ability to grow and thrive at ISU. Consider these tips to increase accessibility and improve all student learning experiences.

  • Present information in multiple formats: A disability may impact a student’s ability to access specific forms of communication. Provide course content in a variety of modalities to eliminate this barrier, and allow all students the ability to access materials through the platform most beneficial to their learning. Create captions and transcripts for videos and audio recordings, include audio descriptions of images, diagrams, or maps, or include a simulation or hands-on experience.

  • Consider how students will engage with course materials and each other: Can you identify any barriers to or within the meeting location(s) or learning environment? Have you selected learning technologies accessible to students with disabilities? Support students by being flexible and providing alternative options for engaging with course materials and each other. Allow students to participate in person or virtually. Give them the opportunity to voice questions and comments, type them within a chat, or provide anonymous feedback via Qualtrics. Encourage students to work together using alternative formats including virtual rooms, team chats, discussion boards, or online interactive apps.

  • Use assessment for learning ownership: Identify alternative mechanisms students may utilize to demonstrate acquisition of knowledge and skills indicated in your learning objectives. Provide a variety of options for students to demonstrate their skills that allow for various strengths, preferences, abilities, and student disabilities.

Contact Lori Mickle (, 515-294-5299) for more information about course accessibility or email with any questions.

Above photo courtesy of Alexandra Kelly/Iowa State Daily.

Brad Dell, Chair and Associate Professor, Department of Music and Theatre
The 2022 Iowa State Conference on Race and Ethnicity (ISCORE) is now accepting admissions and is offering an in-person and virtual option this year. This year's virtual pre-conference, available to Iowa State faculty and staff, will take place on Wednesday, March 2. Thursday, March 3 will feature the virtual ISCORE conference, and Friday, March 4 will be the in-person ISCORE option.

This forum focused on issues of race and ethnicity is free and open to the entire Iowa State community (students, faculty, and staff), and proposals are being accepted through a Qualtrics link through November 12.
Upcoming Events (Oct. 28-Nov. 10)
Register for the events listed below by searching CELT’s Upcoming Events page or CELT’s channel on the ISU Events Calendar. Additionally, we can help register you by emailing with your name, email, department, and program you plan to attend.
Where to Find Support
CELT Open Labs

Visit 3015 Morrill Monday-Friday from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. through Dec. 3 for assistance with Canvas or other pedagogical questions/concerns.
Email CELT

Email to submit a ticket and request a specific one-on-one with a CELT staff member. Make sure to include the course title and any questions you may have.
IT Solution Center

You can email the ISU Solution Center ( or call them (515-294-4000) for technical support. You may also call and follow the prompts to speak with a Canvas representative for support.
24/7 Canvas Support

You may also call 515-294-4000 and follow the prompts to speak with a Canvas representative for support. You can also live chat with Canvas through this link.
Prefer a Print version?
To view the Teaching Tip as a printable document, download the CELT Teaching Tip for October 28, 2021 (PDF).