Ally Accessibility Check

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Benefits of Ally

Lone Star College-Online strives for an inclusive learning environment by championing the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL). To support this effort, the college has adopted Ally, a tool in your D2L courses that benefits all learners by helping to make digital course content more accessible and usable; options that support the UDL principle of multiple means of representation.

What is Ally?

The same company (Blackboard) that created the Blackboard Learn Learning Management System (LMS), has created another product called Ally. Ally works seamlessly with many different LMS (such as D2L Brightspace) to gauge the accessibility of online course content. Ally provides guidance and tips for lasting improvements to your content accessibility. Ally does the following:

  • Automatically runs all course materials through an accessibility checklist that checks for common accessibility issues
  • Provides feedback on the accessibility of your content
  • Provides options and step-by-step instructions for improving the accessibility of your content

In addition to providing you with insight to your content accessibility, Ally automatically creates alternative versions of your files. This allows students to choose the type of file they want that best suits their needs. For example, a PDF document can be downloaded as an HTML file for viewing on a mobile device, or as an MP3 audio file for playback while commuting or working out. While you're in the process of improving files, students still access alternative copies.

More Ally Information in VTAC

Summer Pilot Group

In both Summer 2022 semesters, faculty have volunteered to use Ally to gauge the instructional materials in their D2L online courses for accessibility and usability. If you wish to use Ally to check the accessibility of your Summer 2022 online course materials, please fill out this Ally Early Adoption Form.

We anticipate Ally will be available in all Fall 2022 semester D2L online courses.

Adapted from the Ally section in Blackboard Help.

You can ask your LSC-Online campus representative or instructional designer for more details about Ally or send an email to VTAC@lonestar.edu.