EASI is a non-profit organization, commited to the belief that students and professionals with disabilities have the same right to access information technology as everyone else.
The information technology revolution combined with adaptive applications for people with disabilities provides us with the opportunity to give students and professionals the most level learning and working space in history.
EASI delivers month-long, online courses about designing information systems that will facilitate institutions in achieving this exciting dream.
Everyone who completes an EASI course will receive an EASI document of completion for that course. Those completing 5 of these courses will earn the EASI Certificate in Accessible Information Technology. USM has recognized EASI courses by issuing 15 USM CEUs to those completing 5 of these EASI courses.
EASI takes pride in taking the jargon and mystery out of making information technology accessible without sacrificing the look and feel of the content. The courses provide a general understanding of basic adaptive software and provides internediate skill in using it. The courses are designed to be accessible, and the instructors are either users of adaptive technologies or are professionals who support accessibility. You do not have to be a 'technical-type' to understand making content accessible for people with disabilities.
Besides providing free access to the fee-based Webinars, the members receive a discount on EASI courses. With budgets being slashed, membership can help compensate for the loss of training support. EASI provides both single, individual memberships and institutional memberships
This scholarship provides people who are unable to procure other financing, with registrations to either the fee-based Webinar series or to the EASI online courses. While EASI relies on fees to support our work, nevertheless, we want to share these resources as broadly as possible.
For those who did not know our valued friend, Dick Banks, he was passionate about accessible information technology and eager to get others as committed to the cause as he was.
All courses are entirely online and asynchronous. Content is online using Blackboard. Courses are usually month-long and instructor-led.
Currently, course registration is $350. Students, overseas participants and EASI annual Webinar members receive a 20% discount on courses. Registration information is available on each course syllabus page listed below.)
Schedule for 2017: Jan. 9, july 10
Information technology can provide the most accessible learning and working conditions in history for people with disabilities. This course will enable institutions to design both onsite and online electronic devices and electronic information to include and empower people with disabilities while using universal design to provide user-friendly tools for everyone. When designed from the bottom up, costs will not be prohibitive and both computer and information systems will meet the standards of disability-related legislation.
Schedule for 2017: Feb. 6, August 7
Educational and other information providers on the Internet are increasingly using multimedia as a means to disseminate information. Multimedia poses special problems but also unique opportunities for reaching people with disabilities. Providing transcriptions, captions and descriptive video synchronized with the media is a real challenge. This course will give step-by-step instruction in how and when to provide transcriptions and synchronized captions. It will outline the basic hardware and software applications this work requires. It will give tips on how to use such tools efficiently helping outline the simplest and most efficient work flow. Students will be required to complete simple exercises to demonstrate their grasp of the process.
Schedule for 2017: March 6 and July 11
The course is based on the realization that faculty are placing content inside a courseware management system which is responsible for achieving most Web Accessibility meaning faculty normally only need to know a limited set of accessibility features. The course demonstrates how faculty can achieve accessibility while using authoring applications they already know. Creating accessible course content can be easier than many believe. The course will include recorded webinars about several of the most popular Learning Management Systems. It will also explain how LMS systems are including features that will do some evaluation of the accessibility of content being uploaded and opportunities to rectify these deficiencies.
Schedule for 2017: April 3, Oct. 2Universities are required to provide some training to students with disabilities on using adaptive technology required to do their work. Train the trainer provides staff an initial acquaintance with the major special applications those student may need. The trainer cannot be expert in all these tools, but this course will provide them a solid initial acquaintance including encourage people to have some hands-on experience.
Schedule for 2017: May 1, Nov. 6
This course is designed to support alternative media specialists in creating new documents that are more accessible, and converting existing documents into alternate formats such as Word, PDF, DAISY and ePub. Documents need to be well constructed which in turn facilitates accessibility. Documents also need to be repurposed to other formats based on an organizational need. Currently there are so many different e-readers, (some accessible and some not), that the course includes a discussion of several e-readers as well as providing the ability to design accessible documents.