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Date of Award

Spring 2021

Rights

Access restricted for 1 year to EWU users with an active EWU NetID

Date Available to Non-EWU Users

2022-06-10

Document Type

Thesis: EWU Only

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS) in Psychology: General/Experimental

Department

Psychology

Abstract

Increasing technological advancement, coupled with the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting social distancing orders, has amplified the push for online learning and hybrid courses like never before. As education moves online, are the necessary adjustments to accommodate students with varying levels of ability being made? One would think that online learning would be easier to navigate for Blind and Visually Impaired (BVI) students, but is that truly the case? In this study I investigated if the Learning Management System (LMS), Canvas, is accessible to BVI students. I hypothesized that BVI students would have more difficulty accessing classroom material on Canvas than their able-bodied peers due to a lack of accessibility options within the software. Data on Canvas user experiences were collected via survey to assess student attitudes and behaviors. Statistical analyses revealed no significant difference in the Usability ratings of Canvas in both BVI and averagely sighted students. However, qualitative BVI student self-report data did reveal minor issues with the usability and functionality of Canvas while utilizing Assistive Technologies (ATs) on various platforms. Further research on AT-Canvas interactions is needed to assess accessibility.

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