Microsoft & Accessibility

Educators have several options that can make their course content accessible for free. In the following article from Cult of Pedagogy, Jennifer Gonzalez outlines four tools that can help students better engage with course content at no cost. The four examples use Microsoft Office to provide instructors and students with impressive services, and couples perfectly with FHSU’s free Office 365 for Faculty, Staff, and Students.

Within the article, Gonzalez explains each tool, offers a few ideas on utilizing each one, and provides links to access or download them. The tools include:

  • Learning Tools (aka Immersive Reader) works with Microsoft OneNote. Instructors can load a PDF into Learning Tools, and students can access it online allowing them to change font size; as well as the color of the screen and text; and even have the system highlight nouns, verbs, and adjectives.
  • Dictate is a tool that plugs directly into Word and PowerPoint. This tool allows users to speak into a microphone and their speech will be turned into text.
  • Editor is more of an upgrade than a new tool. Now, Check Spelling will provide synonyms for each word it offers as a suggested change and will also read the word aloud for users.
  • Finally, Translator is by far the most impressive tool of the four. Translator provides presenters with subtitles in real-time. Additionally, subtitles can be displayed in a different language than that of the presenter—making this tool perfect for ESL courses. Finally, students can download an app of their phone and join a virtual room linked to the presentation. Once in the room, students can hear audio translations of the spoken language in their own language.

The following link will take you to Gonzalez’s article:

Additionally, you can access tutorials for the Microsoft Tools through Hoonuit by using the following links: OneNote, Word (PC)/Word (Mac), and PowerPoint (PC)/PowerPoint (Mac). Log in using your TigerNet ID.

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