Electronic and Information Technology (EIT) Accessibility Policy
June 20, 2019
This policy item applies to:
SUNY is the nation’s largest comprehensive system of public higher education, comprised of a growing number of students, faculty and staff with disabilities that may impact the ways in which they access and successfully use electronic information. This growth comes at a time when essential information and services critical to student application and registration, academic course and program completion, employee hiring and evaluation, and more, are increasingly delivered via electronic means.
This document details the State University of New York’s Electronic and Information Technology (EIT) Accessibility Policy, hereafter the SUNY EIT Policy, adopted by the SUNY Trustees in June 2019.
Pursuant to the Board of Trustees’ Resolution No. 2019-50, the recommendations set forth in the Final Report and Recommendations of the Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Committee (EIT Committee) comprise the SUNY EIT Accessibility Policy and apply to SUNY State-operated campuses, community colleges, and SUNY System Administration. The adopted recommendations are listed below (please see full report in the Appendix for additional detail):
Recognizing that technology and technical accessibility standards evolve, the Committee recommends designated EIT Accessibility Officers create communities of practice to propose necessary changes to the Standards over time.
The following definitions are excerpted from the final report of the EIT Committee:
Accessible: In the case of a program or activity, readily usable by a particular individual, with or without alternate formats; in the case of the web and electronic resources, accessible with or without the use of assistive technology.
Alternate Format: Refers to alternatives to standard print. Information presented in an accessible format (examples: electronic, audio, large print, or Braille).
Archived EIT: EIT containing core administrative or academic information, official records, and similar information that are no longer available to a wide audience, but are subject to record retention plans. Note that technology components such as software applications and hardware devices are not placed in an archive status.
Assistive Technology: Any item, piece of equipment, or system, whether acquired commercially, modified, or customized, that is commonly used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.
Classroom Accessibility Standards: A summary listing of all pertinent building code and classroom technology system feature that should be included when constructing / renovating SUNY classrooms. These features draw heavily from the 2010 ADA building standards on federal and state property.
Digital Content Accessibility Standards: In addition to the accessibility standards codified in the Web Accessibility Standards (WAS), requirements and recommendations touch on documents, multimedia, and quality course-building that is inclusive of accessibility.
Electronic and information technologies (EIT): Information technology and any equipment or interconnected system or subsystem of equipment that is used in the creation, conversion, or duplication of data or information. EIT includes, but is not limited to, information resources such as the internet and intranet websites, content delivered in digital form, search engines and databases, learning management systems, classroom technologies; web, computer, and mobile-based applications allowing for interaction between software and users; and services employing information technology and telecommunications equipment.
Equally Effective Alternate Access: The alternative format communicates the same information in as timely a fashion as does the original Web page. For interactive applications and hardware devices, “equally effective” means that the user action (e.g., registration) is accomplished in a comparable time and with comparable effort on the part of the requester.
Exceptions: In certain cases, meeting the accessibility standards required by these guidelines may not be feasible due to an undue burden or doing so would result in a fundamental alteration. Such assertions may only be made by the president or designee who has budgetary authority after considering all resources available for use, and must be accompanied by written statement of the reasons why. These difficulties do not relieve University programs or services from meeting EIT accessibility obligations. Equally Effective Alternative Access must be provided upon request.
Existing EIT: Any EIT purchased or adopted prior to June 2018.
Legacy Content: Any digital content materials produced and published before January 2017.
Library Accessibility Standards: Accessibility best practices and guidance as it pertains to critical library functions including services, collections, physical and digital environments.
Procurement Accessibility Conformance Standards: Checklist for including accessibility as a requirement within the purchasing process for electronic information and technologies.
Web Accessibility Standards: Baseline requirements for compliance with the international web accessibility guidelines - Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).
There is no related information relevant to this policy.
There are no forms relevant to this policy.
There is no authority relevant to this policy.
SUNY Board of Trustees’ Resolution, No. 2019-50.