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How can library databases be made more accessible?

This web page provides a short list of tips to make library databases more accessible. Some tips include speech output systems and electronic resources.

Washington University, DO-IT

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Posted by: knann on Sat Oct 15, 2011 at 5:04 p.m.

I think the title is misleading for the content given. It is really a discussion about the tools and services that libraries should provide to ensure accessibility. Organization of the list of questions could be improved. For instance, first on the list should refer to institutional purchasing policies:---"are materials evaluated for accessibility?" Unless the collection is developed with accessibility in mind, it is difficult to fathom how a librarian can respond to the question: " Do electronic resources with images and sound provide text alternatives or information to these formats". Although the list is actually quite comprehensive, it lacks cohesiveness for transitions between questions concerning policy, tools, and services.

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"We cannot afford to let the issue of disabilities be simply an afterthought. We have a unique opportunity now, as industry pours billions of dollars into upgrading the communications infrastructure, to make sure that people with disabilities are not left behind. Now is the time. Accessibility of services and products for all Americans has got to be a design feature, not an add-on."

Chairman Kennard, Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Statement on Video Description, 11/18/99