Discovery tool

Launch of new question set in discovery tool on accessibility and inclusion

We are delighted to launch a new question set for subscribers to our digital capability service. The questions focus on accessibility and inclusion and are aimed at staff working in educational institutions. This is very timely as institutions are working to meet the requirements of the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

The question set takes a much broader consideration of accessibility and inclusion which is about making sure that technologies, content and services can be used equitably by all staff and students. The sections relate and map directly to the digital capability framework as indicated in brackets after the seven section headings below:

  • accessibility and effective working (digital proficiency, digital productivity)
  • accessibility and producing content (digital creativity)
  • accessibility and resources (information and media literacy)
  • accessibility and problem solving (data literacy, digital research and problem solving, digital innovation)
  • accessibility and relationships (communication, collaboration and participation)
  • accessibility and supporting others (digital teaching)
  • accessibility and self development (digital learning, digital wellbeing, digital identity management)

Subscribers will be able to download a description of these section headings and the questions from the website.

Developing the question set

We gathered together an expert review team to develop the question set over a two month period. This included people from HE and FE, Jisc accessibility experts and specialists in accessibility. This team used the digital capabilities framework and role profiles to identify section headings and activities relating to these. From these the review group developed the questions and feedback. They also helped to identify appropriate resources to support this question set.

We also had a secondary review process to refine the question set by getting feedback from Jisc digital capability team members and interested individuals who subscribe to the service who would be using the question set with their staff.

How to use the question set

Our guidance documentation offers ideas and possible ways to use discovery tool question sets with staff. These questions are designed to help staff consider and reflect on accessibility and inclusion issues in relation to their own job role, although we acknowledge that they may have skills and knowledge gained outside work that could be used to respond to questions.

On completion of the 14 questions staff receive a detailed report which identifies a level – developing, capable or proficient  for each section and offers suggested next steps that they could take to enhance their capability in each area. They are expected to select the most appropriate steps for their personal needs and might consult with managers about this to develop a plan that fits with their continuing professional development (CPD).

Each section in the report will include some suggested resources that might be useful. People can also browse a larger resource bank within the discovery tool to follow up specific areas they choose.

This is a complex area for staff as it covers a wide range of different individual needs, technologies, legal requirements and possible solutions to increase inclusion.  We hope that this question set will help to break down some of the issues into more manageable focus areas and offer ideas to enhance capabilities in this area. The terminology around accessibility and inclusion can be challenging so we have made sure that our discovery tool glossary offers some explanation of the terms used in the question set. We have also added a link to the glossary from the introduction page for the questions.

if you would like further information about the digital capability service and how you can access the discovery tool, please complete this form to find out more.

By Lou McGill

synthesis consultant

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