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Tools and Resources

Here are tools and resources that have been collected to help you learn about increasing accessibility for all community members, including you, business owners, educators, clergy, sports organizers and more. A universally designed community enables each member of the community to participate in all aspects of life. Good design for people with disabilities is good design for everyone!



AUDIT = Accessibility and Universal Design Information Tool

AUDIT’s are measurement tools that were originally created and developed by the ACCESS-ed Project, another R2D2 Project concerning Universal Design in Higher Education (UDE). The AUDITs provide a method to document quantifiable summaries of accessibility and usability features of presentations, forms and documents, and the built environment. Each AUDIT has 2 files. The AUDIT itself is an Excel workbook file. Instructions and additional detail for scoring specific AUDIT items are provided in a PDF document. All AUDITs are developed by a team of accessibility and universal design specialists.

All AUDITs have been tested for compatibility with Excel 2004 in Mac OS X and Excel 2003 in Windows XP and Windows Vista.  

Note: If you are a PC user, in order to use the AUDITs, Macro Security must be set to Medium (recommended) or Low (not recommended). The AUDITs will run on a Mac system without needing this adjustment.

TUSK - Trace Usability Screening Kit


The Trace Usability Screening Kit (TUSK) provides a set of tools that can be used to identify some of the problems that people with disabilities might encounter in using a product.

Quoting from the Trace Center website,

  1. TUSK can be used by product designers to screen early prototypes, uncovering major obstacles to accessibility in the early stages of product development - prior to usability testing.
  2. TUSK can be used by consultants doing product reviews.
  3. TUSK can be used by educators as part of awareness training related to the types of usability problems encountered by people with functional limitations.

Tip Sheets and Posterettes


Developed by the ACCESS-ed team, these documents provide short practical hand-outs on specific universal design topics.

Slide Presentations


PowerPoint™ presentations or slide presentations range from introductory slides about UD, to models of UD, to specific instructional content for teaching universal design implementation and skills.

Videos and Clips


Links to streamable videos developed by others working in universal design are provided here for training and information. Downloadable clips developed by the ACCESS-ed Project present specific universal design examples of accessibility implementations - both the "Accessibility Gems and the Bloopers".

How-to Strategies


Resources in this section include guidelines and methods for implementing universal design.

Checklists & Evaluations


Various assessment tools help organizations review their overall accessibility as well as specifically measure the impact of accessible service delivery, physical environments and information environments and related products.

It took me several years of struggling with the heavy door to my building, sometimes having to wait until a person stronger came along, to realize that the door was an accessibility problem, not only for me, but for others as well. And I did not notice, until one of my students pointed it out, that the lack of signs that could be read from a distance at my university forced people with mobility impairments to expend a lot of energy unnecessarily, searching for rooms and offices. Although I have encountered this difficulty myself on days when walking was exhausting to me, I interpreted it, automatically, as a problem arising from my illness (as I did with the door), rather than as a problem arising from the built environment having been created for too narrow a range of people and situations.

Susan Wendell, author of
The Rejected Body: Feminist Philosophical Reflections on Disability