Online Teaching and Access Guidance

Student Accessibility Services is committed to working with faculty to help create accessible content and courses. SAS is an advocate for access and is available as a faculty resource for accessibility. We welcome the opportunity to explore options and assess possibilities with you.

Please review the FAQs below and contact us if you have questions.

Faculty and SAS Guidance and Collaboration

If you use a test proctoring system, students with disabilities may need certain testing accommodations to look from the computer for a brief period of time (such as restroom breaks, use of scratch paper, looking at a CCTV, use of a reader, etc.).

SAS recommends the following if you are using a test proctoring system and a student needs certain testing accommodations:

  • ProctorHub and Respondus Lockdown Brower: These tools are passive testing tools that do not take specific action during the test itself. With ProctorHub you are provided footage of the exam after the fact to review as necessary.  The student is recommended to notify you prior to the test to explain any behaviors or actions that you may see when reviewing the exam. The student may not be looking at the computer screen continuously or there may be a different arrangement for the exam due to the student’s accommodations.  The notification by the student can help explain any behaviors or actions you may see when reviewing exam footage. Contact SAS if you have questions.
  • Honorlock:  This test proctoring system is more active and can pause an exam if unexpected actions occur during the test. You can list student accommodations in the test settings to guide proctors during the exam.  SAS recommends students contact you if they have any specific accommodations that they want to be sure are listed within the Honorlock system.  SAS may also contact you on behalf of the student to discuss accommodations for the exams.
    More information on how to add accommodations to Honorlock can be found on the Honorlock support webpage.

Students are informed they must notify course instructors of the intent to use extra time for any online test or quiz at least two days prior to each assessment. Professors may choose to proactively program the extra time before receiving student notification or may choose to wait for the student to first formally request.

Instructions on how to extend time for tests and quizzes can be found at:

More information on how to add accommodations to Honorlock can be found on the Honorlock support webpage.

Online exams will not be proctored by SAS. Students need to contact you at least two days before their online exam so you can update their testing accommodations in Canvas.

SAS will only proctor on-campus course exams in face-to-face format.

  • Ensure Exam Windows Factor Extended Time: Please be sure to check that the exam window will be open long enough for the student to use their accommodated time. For example, if the class is set to take the exam at the class time, and the exam closes everyone out at the end of class time, it will not allow the student with extended time to continue testing.
  • Occasional Start Time Adjustment: Students may request to adjust the fixed start time of an online exam if using extra time would create an overlap with a different course requirement. Please work to adjust this time to the greatest extent possible. Contact SAS before denying this request.
  • Challenges with Not Revisiting Test Questions: Students are often taught to read questions and skip those for which they do not have an immediate answer. When online tests are set up to allow for only one question at a time without returning to a previous question, the drastic change in format can create significant anxiety and may greatly reduce test performance for many students.
  • ProctorHub and Anxiety: Use of ProctorHub or similar may create additional anxiety for students. It may be helpful to explain to all students up front what ProctorHub is and how it works. SAS informs students that ProctorHub is a passive proctoring solution that assists faculty members with quiz and exam authentication.
  • ProctorHub and Mobility: Some students need restroom break, stretch breaks or have to make adjustments within their testing environment based on surrounding activity and noise. Students with accommodations may need some flexibility and understanding about test movement when necessary for equal access reasons.

Any audio/video content posted or streamed online will need to be captioned to provide access to Deaf or Hard of Hearing (d/hh) students. Access is achieved when content is simultaneously accessible and available for all students. Student Accessibility Services is working with the Center for Distributed Learning (CDL) to coordinate making course content accessible. How your online delivery method is designed, combined with the student’s specific disability experience, will dictate the extent to which access is achieved.

SAS will provide information to you if captioning or course content for a Deaf or hard of hearing student needs to be designed with necessary accessibility.

Here is some information to guide you:

  • Videos: Any videos shown during your course must be accessible to d/hh students. Ideally, the videos will have embedded captions from the outset. If your course contains videos that are not captioned or not accurately captioned, such as YouTube auto-captions, CDL and/or SAS can assist faculty to make the video accessible.
  • Narrated Power Points: We recommend saving the PowerPoint presentation as an MPEG-4 video file (.mp4) or a .wmv file. Then have the video captioned.
  • Podcasts & Audio Files: Podcasts and audio-only files need to be accompanied by a transcript to ensure access.

If you have a blind student or a student with low vision in your class, any written content will need to be accessible by technology or sight (such as enlarged font). A student who is blind or low vision may need access to course materials through the use of a screen reader or screen magnifier.  Student Accessibility Services works with the Center for Distributed Learning to create course materials in an accessible format.

Course design and the technology students use varies. Courses may be adequately accessible without any additional steps on your end. SAS has contacted all known blind and low vision students and asked them to inform us if they need specific access for their courses.

You do not need to take immediate action on making courses accessible if you have a student who is blind or low vision in your course. Students or SAS will contact you if any access concerns exist.

Things to consider when developing your course:

  • PDF’s are often not accessible for a screen reader.
  • Transferring the PDF to a Word format for students with visual impairments will give them greater access.
  • PowerPoints - Any non-text material (including images, graphs, and diagrams) will not automatically be accessible.
  • For Professors using Zoom for their classes and have a Blind Student or a student with low vision:
    • Zoom is very accessible for blind or a low vision student but there are a few best practices including:
      • If a PowerPoint is to be shown in a Zoom lecture, it should also be uploaded to Canvas in advance so the student and reader can review before or after the lecture.
      • If you will be annotating items, please describe verbally what is being annotated
      • Limit whiteboard board use by students if you have keyboard only users or screen reader users
      • When sharing your screen, describe what is on it including slide numbers if a presentation

Knights Access Instructor is an online portal for UCF professors. If you have students in your class who are connected with Student Accessibility Services, you are welcome to use this portal to view and provide information regarding accommodations for students. This is an optional tool for faculty members to use.

Depending on the structure of online delivery, a notetaker may still be requested in an online course. Notetakers are instructed to only take notes on video content and not on any written content the student may review at their own pace.

If you receive a notetaker recruitment email and feel a notetaker is not needed in your course for some reason (you provide notes for the class, there is no video lecture content, etc.) please contact We can reach out to the student for additional information as to why a notetaker is being sought for the course.