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Northwestern Information Technology (IT) strives to achieve excellence in providing equitable and efficient access to systems and services for members of the Northwestern University community, regardless of ability, in accordance with the University’s obligations under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and state law.

Northwestern IT partners with several campus groups to facilitate assistive technology services on campus for members of the Northwestern community. Our partners include AccessibleNU, a division of Student Affairs, and the Office of Human Resources

Accessibility of Electronic Information

The term accessibility is used to describe whether a user with a disability is able to input information into a computer and retrieve and use the output effectively.

Assistive Technology

Assistive, or adaptive, technology is a general term used to describe technology that assists people with disabilities. It includes equipment, software, or systems used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.

Examples of assistive technology include a modified keyboard or mouse, an adjustable desk, screen readers, screen enlargers, and speech recognition software.


To achieve accessibility on the Northwestern IT website, Northwestern IT follows standard guidelines when creating and maintaining web pages to incorporate web features that people with disabilities—including people who are blind or visually impaired, deaf or hard of hearing, and people with mobility impairments—can perceive, navigate, interact with, and understand. 

More information about Northwestern IT Website Accessibility


Northwestern IT offers hearing-assisted telephone solutions, including headset adapters compatible with University phones, for use with hearing aids as well as for non-hearing impaired users who need more volume than a telephone can provide.

More information about hearing-assisted telephone solutions

Technology-Enhanced Learning Spaces

Some Northwestern learning spaces are equipped with assistive listening devices that transmit audio into the room from a podium, handheld, or lavaliere microphone. A direct auditory amplified signal is sent to the user via portable receivers with earphones and volume controls.
Chicago Smart Classrooms:

Evanston Smart Classrooms:

For more information about how to request the service and determine the appropriate receiver equipment, visit AccessibleNU.

More information about Technology-Enhanced Learning Spaces


Last Updated: 20 December 2018

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