COVID-19 Faculty Information

During the campus transition from in-person courses to a virtual learning environment, it is vital that each faculty member continues to keep accessibility in mind while creating and administering course materials and exams. 

At Fresno State, the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) office has over 1,000 students using various forms of accommodations. SSD strongly encourages each faculty member to review the following information and resources to best assist our students during this time. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact SSD by phone at 559-260-4855 or by email at

Testing Accommodations:

Extended time on exams can be added for individual students on Canvas. For instructions on how to provide this accommodation, please review the following links on how to extend time in Canvas

Please contact the Center for Faculty Excellence by phone at 559-278-7373 or by email at if any further information is required.

If a student is currently taking the quiz while you are viewing the Moderate Quiz page, you can extend the quiz time as part of their current attempt. You can choose how many minutes to extend the quiz, and whether you want to add those minutes to the current time or the current (scheduled) end time.

If LockDown Browser or other software is required for exams, please notify your students immediately. Some students may require the usage of assistive technology to access their exams, please prepare alternative methods to administer your exams such as providing the exam on Canvas without Lockdown Browser, or providing the exam in a Word Doc or PDF document.

Accessibility for Instructional Materials: 

For virtual classes, instructional and or supplemental materials must be made accessible for all students to fully participate and engage in your classes. When posting material online, please check the accessibility of your materials such as Word Docs, PowerPoints, PDFs, Images, Video and Audio.

The Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE) is in partnership with several other CSU campuses and institutions across the country, has developed a Continuity Faculty Resources website. For additional information please visit the Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE) website

The CFE team has also created an Instructional Continuity Plan Resources document that can be utilized by faculty and help complete individual plans. Please email CFE at cfe@mail.fresnostate.eduif you are new to Canvas or need additional guidance.

Microsoft Word and PowerPoint  (PPT)

Please review the templates below to assist in your efforts in providing accessible materials. 

  • Microsoft Word Accessible Template
  • PowerPoint Accessible Template

Both Word & PowerPoint have built-in accessibility checkers that allows you to check for accessibility issues. 

To access Accessibility Checker:

  • Select File > Info > Check for Issues > Check Accessibility

Follow instructions outlined by the checker to identify and fix accessibility issues in Word and PowerPoint.


Not all PDF documents are accessible. When converting a Word Doc or PowerPoint to PDF, make sure to use the Save As feature and not the print to PDF option.

To check to see if your PDF document will work with most assistive technology, follow the instructions below.

  1. Open your PDF document with Adobe Reader or Acrobat Professional.
  2. Go to View tab on the top and select Read Out Loud to activate the Read Out Loud feature.
  3. Go back to View tab and select either Read This Page Only or Read to End of Document to read and listen to your document.

Interpreting and Captioning Services for students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing:

Please contact SSD by phone at (559) 278-2811, by fax at (559) 278-4214 or email Dianna Clayton at

LIVE SESSIONS (Synchronous):

If the session is a live class, it is best to use Zoom which requires remote captioning. Zoom requires a link where the instructor (host) accepts the captioner or interpreter. Please ensure that pre-recorded lectures or posted videos are closed captioned, refer to the Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE) website for assistance.