Michigan State University

Making Education Inclusive

Challenge

Having just finished my first web design class during the spring 2017 semester I was new and excited to learn more about web development. I was fortunate enough to get a fantastic internship in the Education Technology Department within the College of Arts and Letters at Michigan State University. One of my projects that summer was to build a website for the Accessible Learning Conference we put on every year. At the same time, I was also learning about the world of Accessibility. I mainly focused on web accessibility and making sure that the website I was creating would fit MSU’s WCAG 2.0 AA standard.

Accessible Learning Conference Logo
Accessible Learning Conference

Approach

I was lucky and had amazing and knowledgeable people teach me about accessibility. Their level of interest in advocating for accessibility inspired me to take what they taught me and build off of it myself. Learning about accessibility while I was getting better with HTML and CSS, help solidify my understanding of HTML and CSS because to make a site accessible the HTML needs to semantic and adequately separated CSS. Creating an accessible website help me understand the specific uses of each HTML tags and how they differ. The site wasn't just HTML and CSS. It was a Wordpress site. I utilized Google and the vast amounts of Wordpress resources from their documentation to articles and video tutorials to get a better understanding of how the content management system works.

Googles Landing page.
Accessibility training.

Outcome

The outcome was as sustainable WordPress website. It was easy to change the site's content to fit where we were with the conference. With analytic data from the site, we have information to inform the future design of the site.

Different screens showing the screens for Accessible Learning Conference website.