Alternative Text (Alt Text) Services
Some students are not able to read print (or text) in the standard way due to a disability.
For example, some students:
- cannot read standard print because of blindness or vision impairment
- have a physical disability which prevents them holding or turning the pages of a book or printed item cannot follow a line of print due to a learning or concentration disability
These situations illustrate a functional limitation for which students may wish to request alternative text (alt text) services.
What is Alt Text?
Types of Alt Text Formats
How to Obtain Alt Text Services
Steps for requesting Braille
Steps to take requesting E-Text
Additional Information about Alt Text
Online Organizations Offering Assistive Technology to Students
Alt text is defined as "course materials and/or textbooks which are converted into formats that are accessible and usable by students with disabilities."
In other words it is the same material, just in a different form.
The purpose of alt text is to allow access to people who, due to a disability, cannot easily use standard print materials.
An example of alt text is a printed textbook which is scanned and converted to a digital file, commonly referred to as E-text. The E-text file is then read by software, often called a screen reader, so the student may listen to the textbook rather than read it in the standard way.
electronic text (E-text)
audio files in MP3 or WAV format
** In order to receive alternate text services, students must have a documented disability on file with the Office of Disability Support Services (ODSS). **
1. Before the beginning of each semester**, schedule an appointment to
meet with an ODSS counselor or advisor.
2. To schedule an appointment with ODSS, call
(517) 483-1924 .
3. If you are eligible for alt text, you will receive the Alternative Text (alt text) Request form and the Student Agreement for alt text form after your ODSS appointment.
4. Fill out the Alt Text Request and the Student Agreement for alt text forms (one sheet, front and back pages) and follow the instructions on these forms.
5. Turn in the completed alt text request forms to the Reader Services Coordinator at the Support Services front counter.
6. Once you have turned in your alt text forms and other requested materials, Reader Services will begin processing your alt text request.
**NOTE: Many reasonable accommodations require significant pre-planning, therefore, registration with the Office of Disability Support Services prior to situations requiring accommodations is essential.
Requests must be completed well in advance of enrollment as some accommodations may take six weeks or longer to be determined and/or arranged.
Lansing Community College will attempt to provide accommodations in a timely manner; however, it is the student's responsibility to request accommodations and provide proper documentation in advance of the semester for which accommodations are requested.
Accommodations will not be made retroactively.
1. The student must have met with an ODSS counselor/advisor before action is taken on any Braille request.
2. To begin a request for Braille, the student must set
an appointment with the Reader Services Coordinator ten weeks
prior to the start of the course(s) for which the Braille
accommodation is requested.
**The ten week lead time is necessary to the production of the Braille accommodation for the greatest degree of quality, efficiency and effectiveness.
3. The student will fill out the Request for Alternative Text forms as soon as possible. (Students may drop the forms at the Support Services from counter OR email firstname.lastname@example.org
4. If Braille transcription will be a necessary accommodation throughout the student's academic program, the student will need to meet frequently, at least once each semester, with the Reader Services Coordinator to avoid a disruption to this accommodation.
5. The student must supply Reader Services with all written material that is to be transcribed into Braille, including textbooks, and course materials as arranged with the Reader Services Coordinator.
6. If the student needs occasional course material in Braille, she/he must drop the material off at the Support Services front counter with attention to the Reader Services Coordinator. The student needs to turn in this material at least 10 business days prior to need.
7. Requests are processed on a first-come/first-served basis.
1. Students must have met with an ODSS counselor/advisor before action is taken on any request for Braille.
2. Fill out the alt text forms -- Alt Text Request Form and the Student Agreement for Use of Alt Text Form (found on the back).
3. Turn in the alt text forms to the Reader Services Coordinator as soon as possible. (Students may drop the forms at the Support Services front counter Or email to email@example.com
4. Initial process and delivery of e-text files may
take up to 12 business days.
Be Early to get e-text when it is needed.
5. Students must turn in the Alt Text Request Form
along with a copy of proof of purchase (receipt) for each
textbook for which e-text is requested.
a. The receipt must have the student's name on it.
b. Address the receipt to: Reader Services Coordinator.
c. Drop the receipt copy at the Support Services front counter,
or scan and email copies to firstname.lastname@example.org
6. VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: Students will not receive e-text files until the proof of purchase has been turned in to and received by the Reader Services coordinator. Initial processing and delivery of e-text files may take up to 12 business days.
7. VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: If Reader Services requests a course reading assignment list from you, you will need to turn in the requested course reading assignment list as soon as possible in order to continue e-text production for that course. Otherwise, delivery of e-text will discontinue after the first two chapters of the textbook unless a course reading assignment list has been turned into Reader Services. it may take up to 12 business days to resume delivery of e-text.
1. Eligibility for this service is determined by ODSS and is
based in part on the professional documentation provided by the
2. Alt text services must be requested prior to each semester it is needed.
3. Before the beginning of each semester that alt text is requested:
a. The student must meet with an ODSS advisor or counselor,
b. The student must fill out and turn in the Alt Text Request forms and
any requested materials.
4. To receive the very best service: be EARLY. Service is placed in order by date of receipt of the student's completed Alt Text Request forms which includes such information as proof of textbook purchase, class schedule and textbook information.
5. Students requesting materials in alt text must own a physical copy of the textbooks or other course material before the alt text format will be distributed.
6. No e-text will be scanned or requested from publishers until the student has turned the Alt Text request forms to the Support Services front counter for the Reader Services Coordinator.
7. If the digital files do not arrive from the Publisher, the assigned Reader will need to follow the course reading assignment schedule:
8. If a copy of the reading assignment schedule has not been received, delivery of e-text files will discontinue after the end of the second week of the semester until a copy has been turned in to Reader Services. It may take up to 12 business days to resume delivery of e-text.
9. Requests for materials in alt text will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Once a request is made, preference will be given to the format specified by the student. However, the recommendation by Reader Services will be used in determining the specific format for each academic course.
10. Alt text requests must be submitted as soon as the student learns of their need; late requests will be honored however, all timelines set are determined by the student's initial completion and submission of the Alt Text Request forms.
11. When creating alt text from textbooks, the book bindings may be cut off from the student's textbook. A spiral binding will replace the original binding before the book is returned to the student.
12. The student will not share, copy or reproduce any alt text files provided by Reader Services, nor allow anyone else to do so. Misuse of this material may result in disciplinary action by Lansing Community College.
13. Students will be provided with one alt text copy for each material required for academic use. This alt text file is copyrighted and may not be reproduced or distributed in a format other than a specialized format exclusively for use by blind or other persons with disabilities. Any further reproduction or distribution in a format other than a specialized format is an infringement of copyright laws.
14. A letter of understanding regarding #12 and #13 above will be signed by the student and Reader Services, and will be kept on file with Reader Services.
15. If a student repeatedly abuses alt text services by not picking up requests or repeatedly dropping classes after alt text has been produced, alt text services may be suspended until you meet with Reader Services Coordinator.
16. Student questions regarding alt text services should be addressed directly to ODSS or the Reader Services Coordinator.
Bookshare.orgâ„¢ is free for all U.S. students with qualifying disabilities. Student memberships are currently funded by an award from the U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP). Bookshare dramatically increases the accessibility of books.
Bookshare believes that people with disabilities deserve the same ease of access to books and periodicals that people without disabilities enjoy.
Lansing Community College has a roster that Reader Services maintains for Bookshare.org. ODSS students may make an appointment with the Reader Services coordinator to order e-text from Bookshare.org or to sign up for a free individual membership. Just call Dianne Moore at 483-5263.
www.learningally.org (formally known as RFB&D)
FREE AudioAccessSM Individual Membership For Any Qualified Student!
We are pleased to announce that you may be eligible to receive one year of digitally recorded audiobooks, including children's literature and textbooks, FREE, from RFB&D.
Signing up is easy. Go to www.learningally.org to apply now for a free AudioAccess Individual membership.
Fred Wurtzel, Reader Services Coordinator
Disability Support Services
Gannon Bldg, Room 204
Phone: (517) 483-1924
Additional contact information »