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  • Writer's pictureCourseAvenue

Accelerate the Production of Section 508 Compliant eLearning at Scale Through Content Syndication

Leverage hundreds of high-impact and accessible eLearning courses from other federal agencies and departments. Spend less time on eLearning course development by customizing and personalizing existing content from different Agencies.

The Pressing Need For Accessible eLearning Content

The most recent GSA report highlights a need for more Section 508 compliance in the federal government.  

“Overall compliance to Section 508 is well below expectations given the federal government has had over 20 years to implement programs capable of achieving and maintaining modern ICT standards. More than 75% of respondents are at or below average with respect to Section 508 compliance.” 

The Challenges Of Creating Section 508-Compliant eLearning Content

Creating Section 508-compliant eLearning is difficult. The sheer number of technology layers that must work together is significant as the “assistive technology layer” adds a dimension to an already complex landscape. 

Beyond that, many eLearning software companies often demonstrate completely inaccessible eLearning courses while also stating it is possible to create “accessible” courses.  How to do this is left to the unwitting person trying to navigate a sea of accessibility standards, VPATs, and techno-marketing babble.

Simplify the Production of Section 508 Compliant eLearning with CourseAvenue

CourseAvenue is an eLearning authoring platform that generates Section 508-compliant learning materials right out of the box. This capability contrasts with every other authoring product that “retrofits” Section 508 compliance into its technology and places the burden of compliance on the authors. 

CourseAvenue gives its users (called “Contributors”) a system of pre-validated Section 508-compliant building blocks to assemble courseware. These building blocks include common elements such as text, graphics, hyperlinks, knowledge checks, scores, assessments, surveys, audio, video, branching, and other standard and definable “interactions.”  Contributors building new courses must supply their context (text, graphics, and media).  The built-in accessibility analysis tool ensures that the content added maintains the compliance of the pre-validated core components. This approach alerts Contributors when they make accessibility errors and ensures that accessibility is built into every course, out of the box. 

Why recreate the same content over and over?

By removing the barriers associated with creating accessible eLearning content, the opportunities for eLearning content reuse are enormous. 

One area perfect for eLearning courseware reuse is mandatory training courses.

Across the US Government, all federal employees are required to complete many mandatory training courses such as Privacy, Records Management, Ethics Training (IET), No FEAR Act Training, Occupational Health and Safety, Safeguard Against Breach of Personally Identifiable Information (PII), Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), Role-Based Security Training (RBST) and more.

Some agencies develop custom courseware for these mandatory courses using proprietary eLearning authoring tools. Because of their complexity, these tools hinder other Agencies from reusing and customizing the same content. 

Eliminate the Complexity Of Producing Section 508-Compliant Content At Scale

The challenge those creating content for federal agencies face is that eLearning authoring tools make accessibility "developer dependent."  In other words, if you are a developer AND know all about Section 508/WCAG 2.x AA compliance AND have the time and expertise to hand code every element on every page, you theoretically could use off-the-shelf authoring tools to create an accessible course. 

In contrast, CourseAvenue makes courseware reuse simple. Every syndicated course allows contributing authors to:

  • ...replace agency branding, colors, and logos

  • ...update the Welcome and Introduction page(s) with department information

  • ...swap out one case study for another

  • ...replace the contact information if people have questions

  • ...replace the “attached .pdf” with our document instead of yours

When customization is needed, individual departments or agencies customize their unique content without eliminating the core content successfully and previously created by others.

With CourseAvenue, customizing and personalizing existing 508-compliant eLearning content provides a huge opportunity for federal eLearning authors to deliver greater productivity and tailored experiences to each of their learners. Instead of starting from scratch, teams can recoup valuable hours and put that effort back into creating more content faster through sharing, customization, and personalization.

Introducing CourseAvenue’s Enhanced Syndication Manager.

The enhanced Syndication Manager allows any contributing author to save their content as a template others can use - making it easier for teams to rapidly create, personalize and customize Section 508-compliant eLearning content quickly. 

Other contributors can then access a collection of pre-built, Section 508-compliant eLearning content built by different Departments and Agencies. 

With CourseAvenue’s Syndication Manager, eLearning teams can find accessible eLearning courseware they need, copy, customize, and go live without getting stuck in typical design and development cycles that create workflow bottlenecks. 

Even better, if the content already exists as a CourseAvenue course and the original author is okay with sharing it, CourseAvenue does not charge extra for syndication!

CourseAvenue was designed to allow federal eLearning teams to scale accessible eLearning content development efforts  - making teams more effective.  

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