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Esteemed Speaker

Sheryl Burgstahler

Director Accessible Technology Services, DO-IT Center Affiliate Professor, Education

  • University of Washington

Full Bio

Dr. Sheryl Burgstahler founded and directs Accessible Technology Services—which includes the DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology) Center and the IT Accessibility Team (ITAT)—at the University of Washington (UW). These dynamic groups promote (1) the development of self-determination skills, use of mainstream and assistive technology, and other interventions to support the success of students with disabilities in postsecondary education and careers and (2) the universal design (UD) of learning opportunities; facilities; websites, media, documents and other IT; and services to ensure that they are accessible to, usable by, and inclusive of individuals with disabilities.

ITAT focuses its efforts at the University of Washington; the DO-IT Center reaches national and international audiences with the support of federal, state, corporate, foundation, and private funds. Dr. Burgstahler is also an affiliate professor in the UW College of Education and Disability Studies program at the UW and in the Disability Studies and Services programs at City University of New York, where she teaches online. Many of her teaching and research focus on the successful transition of students with disabilities to postsecondary studies and careers and on the application of UD to technology, teaching and learning activities, physical spaces, and student services; the incorporation of UD topics in mainstream curriculum; and the adoption of a UD Framework to inform all practices in higher education within an Inclusive Campus Model. The DO-IT Center’s currently funded collaborative projects include Access ADVANCE, AccessComputing, AccessCSforAll, AccessCyberlearning, AccessISL, DO-IT Scholars, and Neuroscience for Neurodiverse Learners.

Dr. Burgstahler has delivered hundreds of presentations and has more than 100 publications that include the books Creating Inclusive Learning Opportunities in Higher Education: A Universal Design Toolkit (2020) and Universal Design in Higher Education: From Principles to Practice (2015), both published by Harvard Education Press. She and her projects have received many awards, including the Diversity in Technology Leadership Award from the National Alliance for Partnerships in Equity (NAPE), the Professional Recognition Award from the Association for Higher Education and Disability, the National Information Infrastructure Award in Education, the US President’s Award for Mentoring, the Golden Apple Award in Education, the Harry J. Murphy Catalyst Award, the Frances Pennell Economic Opportunity Award, and the induction into the Susan Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame.