Alternative Format FAQ

How can I make a request for alternative formats?

How will I know the status of my request?

What if the book I want is not available from existing sources e.g. OLR book database, e-text sharing groups or the publisher?

What happens to my book when OLR uses it to create an electronic copy?

What if I don't want my book cut?

What if I find I no longer need the book?

Why do I have to show proof of purchase?

What can I use to show proof of purchase?

Is there anything I can do to speed up the process of getting my books in alternative format?

What formats are available or recommended for alternative formats?

What software is available for use with alternative formats?

Where can I get help learning the software for accessing alternative formats?

Are there other places where I can get books in alternative formats?

Is there a cost for alternative formats?

How do I secure alternative formats for non-required reading such as library books, optional books etc.?

How can I make a request for alternative formats?

 Requests are made via an on-line form.  You will need to provide demographics about you and as well as the book title, ISBN and desired format.

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How will I know the status of my request?

Once a request is received and processed, you will receive an email with the current status of your book requests.  If that status changes e.g. a book is now available, you will get an updated email.

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What if the book I want is not available from existing sources e.g. OLR book database, e-text sharing groups or the publisher?

 If the book is not available from existing sources, or if an answer has not yet been received from the publisher, the student will be given the option to provide their copy of the textbooks to OLR (located in the LTC 023) for the in-house conversion.

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What happens to my book when OLR uses my book to create an electronic copy?

If we utilize a student book for in-house conversion, the spine of the book will be cut to allow for scanning. OLR uses a high speed scanner which allows books to be scanned very quickly. The book will then be rebound with a comb binding. The student can choose to pick up the book after scanning or wait for the edited version as a final format. The books with comb binding may or may not be eligible to be resold to the bookstore or other locations as a used book. It is the responsibility of the student to know this information and make informed decisions before agreeing to have the spine cut.  This is critical information for books that are rentals.

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What if I don't want my book cut?

 It is your choice to not have a book cut; however, if OLR is unable to secure the book from the publisher or other existing sources, we would not be able to provide the alternative format. In this case, you would need to complete a cancellation request including a reason for cancellation.  You may want to consider other options such as Book Share or Learning Ally to secure an alternative format.

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What if I find I no longer need the book?

If you find that you do not need the book any longer, you would need to complete a cancellation request including a reason for cancellation. Reasons for cancellation can include, but are not limited to: Book is optional, Completed required reading, Dropped the class or Changed sections and book no longer need.

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Why do I have to show proof of purchase?

Material in textbooks falls under copyright laws. As a result, students are required to purchase hard copies of textbooks in order to honor the copyright laws. It is hopeful that publisher will begin creating accessible digital media and allow students the option to purchase traditional print books or accessible digital media. Until then, all textbooks in alternative formats require proof of purchase.  Proof of purchase is required when the book is ready for pick-up.  You can request your textbooks EARLY without being forced to pay for the book early.

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What can I use to show proof of purchase?

 Proof of purchase can include an original sales receipt or the actual textbook. OLR will verify the proof of purchase, but we do not keep a copy of sales receipts or your actual textbook. You can e-mail verification of books purchased on-line or send a fax of your sales receipt if you are taking classes in remote locations e.g. taking on-line courses but not living in the Greater Dayton Area.

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Is there anything I can do to speed up the process of getting my books in alternative format?

Make your request as early as possible. You can secure book information from your professor, the department or the bookstore. Remember, you do not have to show proof of purchase until you pick up the alternative format. 

If you order your books through the University of Dayton Bookstore or other on-line vendors, you may request delivery directly to OLR. This will expedite the process if books require in-house conversion. If books are to be delivered to OLR, please notify OLR via e-mail so we can expect your books.  You will be notified before we address in-house conversion to verify permission to cut your textbook's spine.

If you order your books through the University of Dayton Bookstore or other on-line vendors, forward the e-mail confirmation of purchase for verification. If a publisher requires the receipt we will have it on-file which will expedite the process.

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What formats are available or recommended for alternative formats?

Alternative formats are an electronic copy of the textbook. Formats can include Word, Text or PDF (Adobe). The PDF (Adobe) version of the book from the publisher may or may not be accessible for screen reader software; however, it should have all pictures, graphs and charts in their original format. Some publisher PDF (Adobe) versions are tagged for use with a screen or text reader. Depending on the type of screen or text reader you utilize, a word or text file may be more effective. Alternative formats can be used for text-to-speech, large print or Braille output. Please contact OLR for an appointment regarding "Assistive Technology" to help determine your needs.

Every effort will be made to secure the textbook in the requested format from the publisher; however, not all publishers provide all formats. If neither OLR nor the publisher has the book in an alternative format other than what was requested, this format will be offered to the student; however, the original requested format may be available through in-house conversion. The objective is to meet the accessibility needs of the student; therefore, OLR can address in-house processing into the requested format.

If a student utilizes Word or Text formats, the WYNN program located in Ryan's Lab will allow transition of the book into an MP3 version. Please contact OLR for more information and training on this process of creating MP3 versions. There are other programs available that will create an MP3 or similar audio file. OLR does not generally create MP3 due to the need for the student to control the voice and speed.

If students have any electronic versions, they can use this for large print through either enlargement of text or enlargement of the view. Please contact OLR for more information and training on these options.

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What software is available for use with alternative formats?

There are a variety of software options depending on the specific needs of the student. OLR will work with the individual student to help determine the most appropriate type of software. OLR offers access to select software in Ryan's Lab and on designated computers in the library for use by students for studying. This software includes WYNN (a text or reader), JAWS (a screen reader), and ZoomText (a magnification program).

University of Dayton also offers access to WYNN software on your personal computer through a network connection.  

Learn more about using WYNN software on your personal computer >>

In addition, OLR can provide a list of open or free source software which students can use on their personal computers. If you wish to purchase commercial software, it is recommended that you contact OLR as discounts may be available.

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Where can I get help learning the software for accessing alternative formats?

OLR can provide one-on-one or group instruction on the supported software available in Ryan's Lab and on designated computers in the library. In addition, on-line tutorials for WYNN, JAWS, and other software programs are available from various sources. If you need assistance, please contact OLR and schedule an appointment for "Assistive Technology Training".


Learn more about the WYNN Training Module (log-in / password required >>
Learn more about JAWS Training from Freedom Scientific >>
Learn more about Atomic Learning for several software programs (log-in / password required) >>

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Are there other places where I can get books in alternative formats?

There are several other options for different formats outside of OLR. This is not to be considered an all inclusive list of options:

On-line Electronic Textbooks

Depending on the student's needs, they may choose to purchase a publisher's on-line version of the book in electronic format. It is important to understand that not all electronic textbooks are considered accessible. Some do not work with assistive technology such as text-to-speech. Students are encouraged to secure clarification regarding the ability to work with assistive technology before they purchase an electronic format to ensure they have necessary access.

Bookshare:

"Bookshare's goal is to make the world of print accessible to people with disabilities. With a dynamic leadership team, dedicated Members and capable partners, Bookshare is making this goal a reality." In some cases, a membership to Bookshare is free. Students are responsible for making requests from Bookshare if they wish to utilize this service. Students are also responsible for any other costs associated with use of Bookshare, e.g. software, etc.
Learn more about Bookshare including membership options >>

Learning Ally (Formerly Reading for the Blind and Dyslexic (RFBD)):

Learning Ally’s mission is to “promote personal achievement when access and reading are barriers to learning by advancing the use of accessible and effective educational solutions.” Students are responsible for making requests from Learning Ally if they wish to utilize this services. Students are also responsible for any other costs associated with use of Learning Ally, e.g. software, etc. OLR Disability Staff can help registered students with completion of paperwork associated with the application for Learning Ally.
Learn more about Learning Ally including membership options >>

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Is there a cost for alternative formats?

 Alternative formats are an academic accommodation provided to select students with verified print disabilities. The only cost associated with this is the student's cost for the purchase of the original textbook as is expected of all students.  OLR does not charge any fees for alternative format production.

Some publisher's require proof of new book purchase. If you have questions about the status of a specific publisher purchase requirements, please contact OLR for more information.

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How do I secure alternative formats for non-required reading such as library books, optional books etc.?

OLR is obligated to provide alternative formats for required reading. If you have optional reading or other materials which require alternative format, you can check with other sources such as the University Library, Bookshare or Learning Ally for options. Students can also scan materials directly into WYNN through use of the computers in Ryan's Lab (located in the LTC near the Blend). Ryan's Lab is available to students with disabilities when the LTC is open; however priority is given to students taking tests. Please contact OLR to confirm availability. 

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