Free webinar: HE and Public Sector update with the University of Southampton

Join our upcoming free webinar for Higher Education, Further Education and Public Sectors to learn from the University of Southampton about its successful 'Accessibility Allies' project, on Tuesday 2 November 2021, 1pm GMT.

Speaking on the webinar will be:

  • Dr Sarah Fielding, Digital Learning Team Manager (pictured below, left)
  • Matthew Deeprose, Senior Learning Designer (pictured, centre)
  • Luke Searle, Learning Designer (pictured, right)

Sarah Fielding, Matthew Deeprose, Luke Searle

AbilityNet's Annie Mannion, Digital Marketing Manager, and AbilityNet's Education and Workplace Relationship Manager, Helen Wickes, will also discuss eLearning tools and accessibility in the higher education and public sectors.

The webinar will last 60 minutes. We encourage you to register for the webinar even if you're unable to attend live, as both attendees and absentees will receive automated emails linking to the recording and supporting materials.

Register for the webinar

'Accessibility Allies' project

To support the rollout of Blackboard Ally (a tool that provides insight into an institution's accessibility), five student interns were employed over the summer at the University of Southampton as “Accessibility Allies”.

In the webinar, the University's Digital Learning Team will share how the project was organised, details of the work the students completed, and how they achieved really impressive results.

Students were involved with remediating course content to make it more digitally accessible, and advised academic staff about how to improve accessibility, among other things. Their work resulted in an average 87% increase in the course files' accessibility, benefiting more than 6,000 students.

Attendees will also have the opportunity to pose questions to the panel.

Do you need to train your organisation about digital accessibility dos and don'ts?  AbilityNet has two HE and FE customisable, cost-effective online eLearning modules.

Here's a taster of what the student cohort of 'Accessibility Allies' achieved during their summer internship working on improving digital accessibility (alternative text description of infographic included):

Accessibility Allies    A summer internship with the Digital Learning Team in iSolutions, focused on the roll out of Blackboard Ally and improving the digital accessibility of existing files on Blackboard.     Avg 32% improvement in course overall accessibility score after intern work     Avg 87%   improvement in course file accessibility score after intern work  6000+ students benefitting from more accessible content in their modules Selected modules with 150+ students   and <50% file score     24 modules remediated by interns over the summer holidays  11 weeks  4 days to complete a module (avg.)     10 debrief meetings with module leaders      5 student interns     Find out more at

A recording, transcript, Q&As and slide deck will be made available following the webinar broadcast. You can find out more about AbilityNet webinars in our webinars FAQs.

Register for the webinar

Further resources

AbilityNet provides a range of free services to help disabled people and older people. If you can afford it, please donate to help us support older and disabled people through technology