Alternative Text Materials

If you are eligible to receive alternative text materials, we can convert those texts into a format that is more compatible for you. Seth Bravin, in conjunction with the DSS Technology Access Assistant, oversees alternative text production.

Request Alternative Text Production

Submit your requests for alternative text production. You can place up to fifteen text conversion requests at once.

Deadlines for Requests

We want to provide all alternative text formats at the start of each semester so that you will be able to begin your coursework on the first day of class.

Please place your requests at least three weeks ahead of each semester:

  • Fall semester: August 1
  • Spring semester: December 1
  • First summer session: April 15
  • Second summer session: May 15

Identifying Your Text Materials

We recognize that our text conversion deadlines occur prior to the start of each semester’s classes and that you may not know which books you will need.

We recommend that you contact your professors via email, or that you talk to them in person, to inquire about their book selections after you have registered for their classes.

If you are unable to speak with your professors before the start of the semester, please request your alternative text materials as soon as you have identified the books you will need converted, even if it is a few weeks into the semester.

Managing Your Coursework 

If you have any questions or concerns about how to manage your coursework while waiting for your texts to be converted, please schedule an appointment with the DSS Academic Skills Assistance team.

Obtaining Electronic Formats 

When we receive your alternative materials requests, we will contact the appropriate publishers to request that they provide their texts in an electronic format. 

We will also search in our in-house archive of texts to see if we already have available a licensed alternate format of any of the books for which you have requested conversions.

When your texts have been converted, the Technology Access Assistant will email you directly with instructions about how to access them.

Manually Converting Books

If we cannot obtain the books from the publishers, and if we do not have access to them in our archive, we can manually scan and convert your books to an electronic format. This process requires that the book binding be cut off, to allow the pages to be scanned, and that it be replaced with a spiral binding.

If it becomes evident that this is the only option for text conversion, the Technology Access Assistant will contact you via email to gain your permission to have your book(s) cut. We will not pursue this option without your explicit approval.

Upon being rebound, the original hardcopy textbook(s) will be returned to you, and you will be able to sell the book(s) back to the university bookstore at the end of the semester, should you wish to do so.

If you opt not to have your book binding cut, in the case where other electronic formats are not available, then DSS may not be able to provide any alternate form accommodations.

Upcoming Alternative Text Deadlines

August
08
Tuesday

Past Alternative Text Deadlines

December
08
Thursday
August
01
Monday

Affiliated Staff

Seth Bravin, Associate Director of Technology Access

Seth Bravin

Seth collaborates with stakeholders throughout the university to incorporate universal design principles and to maintain GW's commitment to accessibility.