Google Information for Instructors

To: MCC Faculty
From:  Disability Resources and Services
RE:  Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Mail
Date: December 9, 2016
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In response to the National Federation for the Blind settlement we have audited the accessibility of our most used Google products for our blind and visually impaired students.  We need to make you aware of the following accessibility issues with Google Calendar, Google Mail, and Google Docs.  Please note that our students have received verbal information, demonstrations and trainings on these accessibility issues as a part of their intake process.  Your assistance can make their accessibility even smoother.

Google Calendar

The first time you open Google Calendar an initial tutorial window pops up and JAWS does not recognize it.  This is a onetime event and you can ignore it.  JAWS does not read all of the options or popups in Calendar and some of the keyboard commands do not respond. 

There is an option in settings to change to basic HTML and this makes it easier to navigate; this can be set as your default.  If you set to Agenda view it will put your content in table form making it easier to navigate.

We suggest that you not use Google Calendar if you have a blind student in your class

Google Docs

If you use the Google Docs link from my.maricopa.edu it may ask for Google Docs to be downloaded even if it already is.  Just ignore this.  Use Canvas and Microsoft Office products as your tools for sharing documents instead of Google Docs; the navigation is easier and there are significantly fewer steps involved.

We suggest that you use Canvas and Microsoft Office products as the tools for sharing documents instead of Google Docs if you have a blind student in your class

Google Mail

Google Mail navigates best in Internet Explorer.  There is an option in settings to change to basic HTML.  This makes it easier to navigate and can be set as default in settings.

Google Mail is not any worse than other email programs and can be used efficiently with the above settings.