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NCDAE: The National Center on Disability and Access to Education

Increasing universal access by
developing educational resources

NCDAE Webcast - Electronic Accessibility in Library and Information Services


The following archive is from a Webcast held September 14th, titled Electronic Accessibility in Library and Information Services. The webcast featured speakers nationally known for their work in accessibility and or information/library sciences. Axel Schmetzke is from the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point library, Marilyn Irwin is from Indiana University's School of Library and Information Science in Indianapolis, and Jennifer Duncan is from Utah State University's Merrill-Cazier Library. The panel discussed the state of electronic accessibility to libraries that are used in distance education. They shared current access data, policy and best practice, and opinions on the specific challenges that must be overcome to create accessible library experiences for individuals with disabilities.

Webcast Resources


The archives for the audio broadcast from September 14, 2005, titled Electronic Accessibility in Library and Information Services, are available below.

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Download Media Players: Windows Media Player with link to download page. Quicktime 5 with link to Quicktime download page.


Marilyn Irwin

For 21 years, Dr. Marilyn Irwin directed the Center for Disability Information and Referral at the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community, Indiana University, Bloomington where she sought to improve information access for people with disabilities, their families, and the people who served them. Effective July 1, 2005, she transferred full time to IU's School of Library and Information Science in Indianapolis as associate professor. Marilyn has written and taught courses on library services and technologies for people with disabilities. Among her works is a training program developed in collaboration with the Arc of Indiana to help librarians better understand how to serve individuals with disabilities ( She was recently elected Vice President/President-Elect of the Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies, a division of the American Library Association that includes a section for library services for people with disabilities.

Axel Schmetzke

Axel Schmetzke is an Associate Professor in Reference and Bibliographic Instruction at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point library. Previously, he worked as college instructor (educational foundations) and as special education teacher at public schools. In addition to a Ph.D. in Educational Policy Studies, he holds master's degrees in Communicative Disorders, Special Education, and Library and Information Science. His major research focus during the past seven years has been on the accessibility of web-based information and education resources for people with disabilities. He has published several articles and given numerous conference presentations on this subject. He guest-edited two special-theme issues in Library Hi Tech on the accessibility of online library resources, he moderates the AXSLIB-L discussion forum, and he maintains a Web Accessibility Survey Site dedicated to research on the accessibility of web-based library and education-related resources. Axel Schmetzke loves sailing, chocolate, margaritas and old vacuum-tube technology.

Jennifer Duncan

Jennifer Duncan currently is the Electronic Resources Librarian at Utah State University in Logan, UT.In that capacity she works to acquire, provide access to, and troubleshoot the electronic journals and databases available to local and remote users. She has been in the e-resources field since 1999--relatively a dinosaur--and previously served in this position at both Columbia University in New York City and Texas Christian University in Ft. Worth, Texas.

The discussion was moderated by Cyndi Rowland of the National Center on Disability and Access to Education