Purchasing or Using Free Third-Party Digital Products
- Notify the Director of Digital Accessibility.
Before you begin, you are responsible for notifying the director of your plans to purchase or use this third-party property.
- Any vendor contracts need to include the proper accessibility checks.
Vendors must agree to contractual language that they will adhere to WCAG Level AA guidelines, including making any requested updates to bring inaccessible areas of their product into compliance.
- Perform a high-level accessibility review and test.
The Director of Digital Accessibility must test the third-party product before it is purchased or can be used.
- Accessibility issues are documented and communicated to the vendor.
The Director of Digital Accessibility will make a report of any issues found and how to fix them to be delivered to the vendor.
- Fixes are made.
The vendor addresses any accessibility issues or makes a plan to address the issues within a specific time frame. The vendor and Digital Platform Business Owner notify the Director of Digital Accessibility once the issues are believed to be fixed.
- Product added to Master List.
The Director of Digital Accessibility will add the third-party product to the Master List once it has launched.
- Plan for ongoing audits.
The new digital product will be reviewed regularly, like any other USC site, app, tool or other interaction.
- Accessibility review after launch.
The Director of Digital Accessibility will review the product again for accessibility issues before and after integration and/or launch. If any additional issues are found, the director, Digital Platform Business Owner and vendor repeat steps 4 and 5.
These procedures apply to any and all platforms instructors may want to use to facilitate their online classrooms. These platforms must comply with digital accessibility guidelines or they cannot be used for courses at USC.
Third-Party Digital Properties That Fail in a Majority of Accessibility Areas
If a third-party digital property fails in most or all areas of digital accessibility compliance during the Director of Digital Accessibility's review, a full report of issues will not be documented and delivered to the vendor. Instead, the Director of Digital Accessibility will communicate to the vendor that the digital property fails compliance on a number of levels and that there are only two solutions to move forward:
- The vendor must make large-scale updates to the digital property to bring it into compliance with digital accessibility guidelines.
- The university will not be able to approve or renew the vendor's contract due to the digital property's compliance failure.
Required Accessibility Provision
Any contract, obligation or agreement must include a provision that the product, service or tool is compliant with accepted accessibility standards or that any issues preventing compliance will be fixed within a specific time period requested by the university.
The contract, obligation or agreement must also hold the University of South Carolina harmless for any claims, damages, expenses, fines, costs, attorney’s fees and any other liability resulting from the university’s acceptance and/or use of the product, service or tool.