About Alternative Formats

Alternative formats is an accommodation intended to help ensure students with disabilities, such as visual impairments or learning disabilities, have equitable access to all course materials. This process involves converting textbooks, required readings, assignment documents, and other academic content to accessible formats such as large print, Braille, and digital content that is compatible with assistive technologies (e.g. screen readers, text-to-speech, magnifiers, etc.) among others.

IT Accessibility Center

The Disability Center collaborates with the IT Accessibility Center on campus to convert these materials into an accessible format and provide students with appropriate assistive technology to meet their needs.


Following your approval of the alternative formats accommodation, you will need to participate in an alternative format consultation with the IT Accessibility Center to determine which digital format will best meet your needs. To schedule an appointment contact Jennifer Thornhill via phone at (573) 884-2600 or email at thornhillj@missouri.edu.

Requesting Alternative Formats for Class

After completing your alternative format consultation:


  1. Log in to myAccess and request you accommodation letters.
    • Step-by-step instructions for this can be found on our myAccess guide page. Be sure to include “Alternative Formats” in your letters for the courses you need textbooks or course material conversions.
  2. To request each book you need converted, select the Alternative Formats module on the left-hand side of your screen.
  3. Within the Alternative Formats module, click on “Review Request or Add Books”. This is where you then either select which book(s) you need converted from the bookstore list, or manually enter your book information if it’s not listed from the bookstore, and then click “Submit Request.”
  4. Provide the Accommodations Coordinator with a proof of purchase/receipt for the books.
  5. Check your MyAccess profile for any updates on the status of your conversions. Please know that textbook orders and conversions can take up to two to four weeks.

Requesting Library Materials in Alternative Formats

Students who need to utilize library books from Ellis Library and require them in an accessible format should contact the Head of the Library’s Access Services, Cindy Cotner.


  • If the library has an accessible format of the book, this will be provided directly to you by the Library.
  • If an accessible format is not readily available, you can make a custom alternative format request in MyAccess, send in proof to our office that you’ve received/checked out the book(s) from the library, and then the Disability Center will work on getting an accessible version to you.

Additional Library Resources Related to Alternative Formats

  • An ACT Center Adaptive Workstation is located on One East/Central in Ellis Library. The workstation includes JAWS for Windows screen reader, Kurzweil 3000 LearnStation, and ZoomText Magnifier/Reader as well as headphones that can be checked out at the front desk.
  • KIC (Knowledge Imaging Center) Scanners are located within the Journalism and Geological Sciences Libraries on campus. This tool can be used to scan and save sections/chapters of books. Scans can be saved as a PDF making the scanned materials compatible with Kurzweil as well as most other screen readers.

For Faculty

The Disability Center collaborates with the ACT Center to convert materials into accessible formats for students. However, you can help ensure that your students receive any alternative format accommodations in a timely manner by making all your course material available to students at (or before) the start of the semester, and let students know where and how to access them on the first day of class.


Contact our Accommodations Coordinator at disabilitycenterbooks@missouri.edu with any questions about the process for alternative format accommodations.

Contact the ACT Center at actcenter@missouri.edu with any questions about assessing your content for accessibility or creating accessible content.