ADA Compliance for Textbooks and Educational Material

Authors who write textbooks and other texts associated with education should consider the formatting requirements included in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) when publishing their books. Many schools, colleges, and universities will not adopt texts that are not machine readable or accompanied by companion accessible editions.

The use of text-to-speech technology is the primary method through which these accessible versions are delivered. Large print ebooks or printed versions also may be a practical alternative.

All visual material should be considered during the writing and development of manuscripts to ensure the delivery of accessible content when necessary. People who are blind or have vision impairments require alternative methods to use texts that have information presented in a visual form such as photographs, charts, graphs, and illustrations. In addition, accessible content must be provided for tables that present information in a way that cannot be understood by those with vision disabilities.

An effective way to address these accessibility issues is to provide alternate text descriptions for photographs, charts, graphs, and illustrations. These descriptions must be made available in both short and long form versions. The descriptions should present essentially the same information conveyed by the images they describe and fit with the surrounding text of the work.

Alternate text also must be supplied for tables that can be understood by the visually impaired in text-to-speech versions of the book. Other media assets such as videos and animations also need accessible scripts.

Policy: Lulu Supports Customers With Disabilities

Lulu provides support to customers with disabilities by request. If a customer or institution requests a version of an author's book for use by persons with disabilities and provides proof of purchase, Lulu will provide the customer with an accessible version on the author's behalf. 

If authors prefer to create their own version for use by persons with disabilities, they are welcome to do so. All copies created pursuant to this policy shall: 

  1. Not be reproduced or distributed in a format other than an accessible format exclusively for use by persons with disabilities;
  2. Bear a notice that any further reproduction or distribution in a format other than the accessible format for persons with disabilities is an infringement of the author's copyright; and
  3. Include a copyright notice identifying the author as the copyright owner and the date of the original publication.