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Library Access Checklist

    Creator: American Library Association

    Date Updated: March 26, 2024


    The American Library Association (ALA) document discusses the importance of public libraries ensuring equal access to technology for those with disabilities. It provides a checklist for libraries to evaluate their level of accessibility by asking questions about the environment and users’ needs. In addition, it provides a brief overview of accommodations and tools that persons with disabilities will use.

    The information on this page is summarized from the ALA Library Access Checklist.

    Quick Facts

    • Libraries must ensure equal public access to technology for all users, regardless of ability, to fulfill their mission of providing free access to information.
    • Libraries should follow principles of universal design when selecting technologies to make sure all users, ranging from average to those with various learning or physical disabilities, can use information services.
    • A checklist is provided to help libraries assess their current level of technology accessibility and identify areas for improvement.
    • Staff should survey facilities and community needs to understand how to provide access.
    • Designating computers as “accessible” and having staff available to assist are two common approaches libraries take.
    • Accessible computers should include adjustable tables, keyboards, trackballs, wrist rests and enlarged displays to support persons with mobility impairments.
    • Screen reading, enlargement and braille software can aid the visually impaired.
    • Captioning and text alternatives benefit those with hearing impairments.
    • Speech output helps individuals with learning disabilities.

    For more information, check out the ALA Library Access Checklist.


    American Library Association. (2009, July 20). Library Access Checklist. American Library Association.