Meetings are a daily occurrence on Ontario university campuses. As part of the series “Hosting Accessible Meetings,” this tip sheet offers advice that should be shared with speakers and presenters.
Know Your Participants: Plan for inclusiveness
Allow your participants the opportunity to identify their accommodation needs early in the process via your initial notice or invitation. This will allow you time to be prepared and to arrange for any requests related to accessibility.
When you begin organizing your meeting, consider consulting with persons with disabilities. They know what works best for them in providing accessible services.
As the meeting organizer, be sure to advise speakers or presenters of any relevant information related to an accommodation request — for example, that an interpreter will be present and will sign everything that is said and say everything that is signed.
Tips for presenters
Stick to the planned schedule.
Provide print and electronic handouts to the meeting organizer well before the event, so that accessible formats can be produced and distributed before the meeting.
Prepare audiovisual aids using at least 18-point sans serif fonts such as Arial or Verdana. Use high-contrast colours.
Caption all video material for participants who are culturally Deaf, oral deaf, deafened or hard of hearing. Provide descriptive narration format for people who are blind or have a visual impairment.
Use presentation materials that are to the point and concise.
Speak clearly and at a moderate pace. Face your audience during the presentation to allow people who are culturally Deaf, oral deaf, deafened or hard of hearing to process on-screen messages, and for the interpreters to communicate the spoken word through sign language.
During question-and-answer periods, remind people to speak slowly and clearly, and to state their name before speaking.