What are Accessible Educational Materials

Accessible Educational Materials (AEM) are instructional materials, including print instructional materials, that have been formatted or adapted to meet the individual needs of students with disabilities. Examples include restructured print, braille, large print, digital text (or e-text), audio, graphic-enhanced or symbolated text, captioned videos, images, tactile graphics, and manipulatives. How AEM are provided to students should be based on student needs using evaluations of how the student’s disability affects involvement and progress in the mastery of Florida standards. A statement summarizing this should be present in the student’s IEP. Based on this IEP statement, the identification of appropriate AEM may involve a review of the student’s language and reading level, an assessment of how the information is structured or organized, and consideration of how the information is presented (visual, auditory or tactile).

As districts move to a digital curriculum and replace traditional textbooks with online books, electronic media, multimedia, computer software, mobile devices and learning laboratories, additional accessibility assessments may be needed. Such assessments will help to identify the appropriate formats, features and accommodations needed to ensure these instructional materials meet the individual needs of students with disabilities.

  1. Florida Department of Education Accessible Instructional Materials Technical Assistance Paper
  2. National Center on Accessible Educational Materials
  3. Letter to the District on AEM, Kay Ratzlaff