Spartan Ally: What you need to know
MSU is committed to providing an inclusive learning environment that promotes success for all students. A new D2L tool, Spartan Ally, is being released to support faculty efforts in creating more accessible classroom experiences. Spartan Ally will advance MSU’s inclusive learning initiatives, promote the campus digital accessibility strategy, and improve access to course materials delivered through our D2L learning management system. Spartan Ally is a very useful tool for enhancing student success, and users are encouraged to share with their peers that this tool is available for all D2L courses.
What is happening?
· On August 17, 2020 MSU IT will activate Spartan Ally in D2L
· Spartan Ally provides students with access to downloadable alternative formats for many file types in D2L without changing how they access their courses or interact with your original course content
o Spartan Ally will not modify your original content.
o No action is required from faculty for the creation of on-demand alternative formats.
· Spartan Ally is configured to automatically complete a machine check of your course content, it looks for common accessibility issues, and provides step-by-step instructions for improving accessibility.
What do I need to do?
· Faculty and instructors will have Spartan Ally available automatically for each of their courses.
o When Spartan Ally is made available, it will be readily accessible as a tool for faculty and instructors to use.
· This semester, we encourage you to explore Spartan Ally in your D2L courses and identify steps to improve the accessibility of your course.
· A guiding principle for faculty to consider is: Progressive improvement, not perfection.
o A great place to start is course syllabi and other frequently used course content.
Where can I learn more?
· With help from Spartan Ally summer pilot faculty, MSU IT has developed a Spartan Ally self-enrollment resource in D2L for support and resources
· Watch the video for an overview for D2L
· For an overview of Ally, its functionality, and live training opportunities please visit the Spartan Ally WebAccess site