Accessibility For Student Surveys

  • Updated

Why Accessibility Matters

We know that all teachers want all students to have equal access to the opportunity to share their voice. Panorama’s mission of hearing the voice of students is central to what we do, and by ensuring everyone can share their experiences, we can build an inclusive culture of giving and receiving feedback. Read on to learn more about the key features of Panorama’s platform that support students’ accessibility needs.

Panorama's surveys...

  • are screen reader compatible
  • do not rely heavily on multimedia - there's no video or audio on our survey-taking pages!
  • follow accessibility guidelines for contrast and color
  • can be completed using only a keyboard or mouse
  • don’t have a time limit, allowing users to take as much time as they need
  • list answer choices on questions in a consistent format
  • are translated into many languages (student SEL surveys are available in six different languages, while student feedback surveys are available in twelve language)

How to Ensure Accessibility for All Students

While our platform ensures that all students can access our surveys to provide valuable feedback, there are some best practices that you can apply.

  • Provide students with any accommodation they would receive for an academic test or assessment. This could include supporting them in physically selecting the correct answer choice or providing additional examples!
  • Use the Read Aloud functionality for survey-taking. The Read Aloud feature is designed to enhance survey-taking accessibility by reading the survey questions out loud. All panorama content is supported by the read aloud functionality.  
    • In order to use this feature, survey takers must click the Turn on read-aloud button at the top of each survey. Once the feature is enabled, a speakerphone icon will appear for each survey question, answer choices, and headers and subheaders. 
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Read Aloud is supported via most major browsers such as Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Safari, etc. If a browser does not support read aloud, the icon will not appear. However, you can use the "text-to-speech" functionality in your web browser to read questions aloud. 

All supported languages will have access to the read aloud function. If a survey respondent's language is not supported, the read aloud functionality will not appear.

We've tested this across browsers and languages, and found that the tool typically supports all of Panorama standard translated languages, depending on the settings of the individual users browser and operating system.
Here are two resources to add languages to their own browser:
microsoft-icon – Rokstad Power Windows instructions
File:Google Chrome icon (February 2022).svg - Wikipedia ChromeOS instructions 

  • Ensure that students are able to use screen reader software as necessary. All of Panorama's survey-taking pages are screen reader accessible, meaning that students can have the questions read aloud to them if it is important to their comprehension. Double check that the tablets or computers students are using to take the surveys support the use of a screen reader.
    • An alternative to screen readers, particularly if you are proctoring a survey for younger students, is to read each survey question aloud.
    • The video below walks survey-takers through using Google Chrome's (Mac OS only) "Text-to-Speech" features to have their survey read aloud. You can visit this page for more detailed Mac OS written instructions as well as PC-specific details.

  • Highlight the language dropdown on the survey-taking page. Panorama content is translated into a variety of languages, and students have the ability to select the language they want to complete the survey in. 

(Figure 1.)

  • Give younger students a vocabulary lesson to make sure that they understand the language used in the survey questions.Not only is this a helpful way to incorporate the survey-taking process into day-to-day learning, it will empower students to voice their feedback on the survey

a. The original version of our Panorama's Mini Vocabulary Lesson has terms and definitions in both English and Spanish. The linked deck will instruct you to make a copy, so that you can edit the slides and remove parts that will not be helpful to your students.

b. We have updated versions of our Panorama Mini Vocabulary Lesson which are only available in English at this time. 

  • Make sure that students understand the purpose of the survey by using our Proctor Guides to administer surveys and answer any questions!

Learn More

  • Check out our blog post about accessibility to learn more about how Panorama can support accessible survey-taking in your school or district. If you need more technical details or specifics, we recommend downloading this one pager that outlines how our products and services align with federal and online guidelines.
  • Read more about screen readers using this resource from the American Foundation for the Blind

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