ctcLink Accessibility

This page outlines some of the issues regarding ctcLink and accessibility.

ctcLink continues to refine and improve the user experience for users across a number of areas. Please check back here for updates on how the BC campus is responding to accessibility concerns regarding ctcLink.

While ctcLink will bring many good things to our campus, we also know that the system is inaccessible to many screen reader and other assistive technology users. Here are the issues that we know about:

  • ctcLink has widespread accessibility issues for people with disabilities who use screen readers or other types of assistive technology. For more details about the inaccessibility issues, please visit the Issues section to learn more.
  • ctcLink has had confidentiality issues for students and staff/faculty using disability accommodations. The State Board of Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) has come up with ways to eliminate these issues, and we are currently waiting for confirmation from ctcLink-live colleges that these fixes have addressed the issues.
  • Many people at BC and other community and technical colleges around the state are engaged in advocacy work to address the inaccessibility of ctcLink. For more information and how to get involved please visit the Get Involved section to learn more.
  • To ensure our services remain accessible to Disabled (and in particular blind and low vision) students, staff, and faculty, we will all need to engage in trainings and create departmental and office plans to support students and employees for whom ctcLink is inaccessible. Check out the Campus Plan section to learn more.

  1. Representatives from the State Board of College and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) have stated ctcLink will not be screen reader accessible by our go live date.  While there are inaccessible features throughout the program, below are some examples of negative impact on screen-reader users: 
    • The primary class registration page for ctcLink is not screen reader accessible. 
      • Screen reader users (students) attending colleges using ctcLink are currently using a workaround through the mobile app. The mobile app is screen reader accessible and can be opened in a web browser on mobile or desktop devices, allowing students to register for courses that way.
    • Screen-reader using staff do not have the ability to submit their timesheets using the “weekly view”.  As it is now, the “weekly view” is not screen reader accessible. 
      • Screen reader employees currently using ctcLink are submitting their timesheets using the daily view”.
    • Screen-reader using supervisors do not have the ability to approve their supervisees’ timesheets. 
      • There is currently no alternative. 
  2. Currently, old data for students and employees who are coded for disability and accommodations are viewable by all disability office and Human Resource office staff across the SBCTC system. This means an employee at any SBCTC system with the security permissions to view disability and accommodation information (e.g. they are working in the Disability Services office or in Human Resources) would be able to view the disability and accommodations for BC students and employees that may have had accommodations at other institutions in the past.
    • An example of the impact of this would be an employee who has workplace accommodations at a live ctcLink school, and applies for a job at another SBCTC institution that is live on ctcLink, could potentially have their disability accommodations revealed prior to their interview, without their consent if their employee profile was reviewed by a person who has this security permission. 
      • SBCTC has implemented a fix for confidentiality of registered disabled employees and is in the process of removing the data from the incorrect locations. We know the solution has been implemented and are waiting for SBCTC and ctcLink live colleges to confirm the fix through testing.   
    • Similarly, students wishing to transfer to another institution within the SBCTC may wish to enroll without revealing a disability, and the current ctcLink removes this right from them if their profiles is reviewed by a person with this security permission. 
      • SBCTC has implemented a fix for confidentiality of registered disabled students and is in the process of removing the data from the incorrect locations. We know the solution has been implemented and are waiting for SBCTC and ctcLink live colleges to confirm the fix through testing. 

Campus is currently working to organize sessions on supporting screen reader and assistive technology users who will be prevented from independently accomplishing tasks in ctcLink.  Be on the lookout for future communications to learn more! 

  • Contact your relevant SBCTC Council to bring up this issue and encourage them to advocate at the state level for accessibility. 
  • Watch the ctcLink and Accessibility session held on April 19th 2021 from 2-4pm. Recorded presentation will be posted at a later date. 
  • Talk to your colleagues at other community and technical colleges to encourage advocacy from across the system. 

We would like to invite you to our Monthly Accessibility and ctcLink Open Forum. Please visit the accessibility forum web page for details on:

  • Upcoming meetings with Zoom link access
  • Access to past recordings and slide decks
  • Accessibility updates
  • Contact information

Our next meeting will be held on Tuesday May 11 from 11:00 am – noon. Already have questions? Please submit them ahead of time to Sandy Main at smain@sbctc.edu.

Please share this information and we look forward to you joining us.

Disability Support Services Council (DSSC)

The Disability Support Services Council (the statewide council of Disability Services offices) has been advocating for ctcLink to be accessible to screen reader users since 2011. The DSSC has submitted three formal letters through the state-wide governance structure up to SBCTC since 2017. Individual DSSC representatives from live colleges have raised concerns that ctcLink is not accessible for screen reader using students and employees since the test colleges went live in 2015, and with each college that goes live Disability Services offices submit tickets on behalf of students when individual accessibility issues are discovered (every time an individual field or button is not screen reader accessible, a new ticket needs to be made). DSSC as a council has had multiple meetings with SBCTC IT and ctcLink project employees over the past year. Along with DSSC board members meeting individually with the SBCTC CIO, representatives have also attended DSSC’s quarterly membership meetings in Fall 2020 and Winter 2021. DSSC continues to have regular communication with SBCTC regarding ctcLink accessibility. 

Committee on Accessible Technology Oversight (CATO)

The Committee on Accessible Technology Oversight also wrote a letter to SBCTC in Winter 2020 and continues to advocate from their position. CATO members have also attended meetings with SBCTC IT/ ctcLink employees to give information about accessibility testing and where CATO members have tested for accessibility issues with ctcLink and the OAAP. 

BC Governance

Currently Proposal 1259 has been proposed as part of BC governance advocating BC delay going live with ctcLink until both the inaccessibility and confidentiality issues are addressed.  The Council for Inclusion and Diversity (CID) is the sponsoring council. 

Current and Future Updates
  • 2/2/2021: OAAP Launched with no known critical blockers for accessibility. 104 non-critical items were noted by Level Access 
  • 2/3/2021: Bellevue College CID proposal discussed at CID Governance meeting  
  • 2/21/2021: PeopleSoft data flow was turned off that was synchronizing accommodation information from HCM to CS  
  • 2/25/2021: OAAP All applicant related items were addressed and released into production in regard to accessibility  
  • 3/1/2021: OAAP Central Administration at SBCTC 6 accessibility items addressed and deployed  
  • 3/1/2021: ctcLink accessibility website was updated to have more information  
  • 3/3/2021: DSSC met with SBCTC and discussed concerns with OAAP, requested removal of UserWay plugin  
  • 3/7/2021: OAAP College/District Administrative accessibility issues (40) addressed and deployed  
  • 3/11/2021: OAAP Received additional accessibility fixes including accessible color contrast on graphical charts and removal of UserWay plugin  
  • 4/1/2021: Enable Screen Reader Mode option at ctcLink login page found to not activate function through all pillars. Instructions to enable available here while problem is worked on. https://www.sbctc.edu/colleges-staff/it-support/ctclink/screen-reader-mode.aspx  
  • Future: Scrub accommodation data that was synchronized from HCM to CS  
  • Future: Initiate new regression test of OAAP with third-party vendor  
  • Future: Begin accessibility review of the Finance pillar image 39 update that is scheduled for deployment on May 1  
  • Future: Reprioritize outstanding accessibility tickets and engage with Oracle for corrective action  
  • Future: Continue working with Oracle on open service requests  
  • Future: Update the ctcLink accessibility web site and begin work on the March Accessibility Report  
  • Future: Work with DSSC on structuring and creating a monthly meeting  
  • Future: Permissions configured to restrict HR role so not all HR users would have access to accommodation information  
  • Future: Permissions configured to restrict college accommodation role access so not all accommodation users would have access to information in other institutions 

Last Updated November 14, 2021