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Q. What support is available for making my reading list more accessible?

I am a member of staff putting a reading list together for a module I'm teaching on, can you provide any advice on accessibility?

Answered By: Hilda McNae
Last Updated: May 11, 2023     Views: 24

When creating your reading list then there are a number of things you can do to make it as accessible as possible for students:

  • ensure the list has a clear structure by week or theme
  • annotate the list with level of importance (e.g. essential or further reading), information on why or how you want students to engage with the text or an explanation of how the reading contributes to scholarship in the field. 
  • recommend texts which can be provided digitally. Many electronic resources can be adapted where required thus ensuring there are fewer barriers for students in accessing the module reading
  • use the online reading list service provided by Libraries & Museums. The software conforms to web accessibility guidelines and we can enter your reading list for you or support you if you prefer to do it yourself. Submit your list to and we will automatically purchase e-versions of essential readings (where available and affordable) , ensure that any digitised material is provided in an accessible format and that links to resources are correct.

If a student has a specific requirement for materials to be made available in an alternative format to those the library provides then we will work with the Digital Accessibility Adviser in Student Services to identify those items. While the University's copyright licence only allows for the scanning of a limited amount of content (typically one chapter from a book of 10% of a total work) an exception exists in copyright law to provide accessible copies for disabled users and therefore the Digital Accessibility Adviser is able to copy 100% of a work 

 SensusAccess Software is available for staff and students who wish to create alternative formats for their own use. This converts PDFs, including image only pdfs, jpegs and other files into an ebook, text file, audio or braille


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