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Accessible Event Planning

Planning Accessible Events

As a university, we strive to be inclusive to all members of our community, including the 1 in 31 students and various employees who have a registered disability and many other members of our community with disabilities.

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, UW Oshkosh is required to provide access to programs and services to all qualified participants regardless of disability. All University of Wisconsin Oshkosh entities are responsible for ensuring that their programs, services, and activities are accessible. 

Considering accessibility when planning events can benefit the experience of all participants by creating a more diverse group. Also, many accessibility checks, such as good lighting and sound, wide walkways, captioning, etc., can benefit everyone.


Advertisements include brochures, flyers, web flyers, email blasts, Facebook event pages, etc.

All advertisements must include the following statement to ensure accessibility accommodations can be requested:

“UW Oshkosh is an affirmative action, equal opportunity educator and employer. If you need an accommodation to participate in this event, please contact the UW Oshkosh ADA Coordinator at (920) 424-1166 at least 5 days prior to the program. Students needing accommodations should contact the Accessibility Center at (920) 424-3100.”

Postcards and smaller posters, please use the following shorter version and change the font size:

“Please contact ADA Coordinator at (920) 424-1166 if you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in this event. Students should contact the Accessibility Center at (920) 424-3100.”


Event organizers are required to ensure that all materials for the event are available to be put in an alternative format upon request.  This could include large print, digital, transcribing, interpreting, captioning and more. 

Large Print guidance is available at: American Council of the Blind. Best Practices and Guidelines for Large Print Documents:


  • Parking
    • Nearby ADA designated parking
  • Route & Entrance
    • Route from ADA parking to entrance is flat and paved
    • A ramp is available where exterior steps lead to entrance
    • Clear signage to an accessible entrance (if main entrance is inaccessible) is present
    • The door has a lever style handle (not a knob) and is relatively light, if the door is not automatic or held open
  • Event Location
    • The furniture is moveable, or in fixed seating areas, accessible seating options are available for participants with mobility disabilities
    • Interior walkways are wide (at least 36”)
    • There is plenty of space to maneuver around tables
    • The lighting is good
    • The acoustics are good, and in rooms where audio will be amplified (microphones), assistive listening devices are available for participants who are hard of hearing
    • Reserved seating near front for participants who are Deaf or hard of hearing is available
    • Stage and projector screen is easily visible (if in use)
    • Restrooms with accessible stalls are located near event location(s)
    • Clear signage indicates location of accessible restrooms and elevators
    • Electric cords crossing walkways are covered


Registration materials should include a statement describing procedures for requesting accommodation(s) along with a contact person. See advertisements section.

To help with advanced planning consider including the following on registration materials:

___Wheelchair accessible lodging

___Dietary restrictions

___Electrical power source for recharging batteries (specify voltage)

___Assistive devices (specify types)

___Sign language interpreter

___Real-time captioning

___Assistive listening devices (specify types)

___Audio-taped materials

___Sighted guides for assistance to and from specific sessions

___Large print


___Other (specify)

  • Please indicate the accommodation(s) that you need for your conference stay:

If lodging and/or meals are coordinated through the event, an opportunity must be provided to request accommodations related to diet and lodging.

When talking to hotels:

  • Check with hotels to ensure they understand the level of their accessibility and have procedures for providing access to their facilities
  • Determine an alternative plan for meeting rooms or facilities that are not accessible.


Individuals attending campus events must be given the opportunity to request accommodations within a specific time period. See Event Advertisement section.

Types of common accommodations include but are not limited to:

  • Preferential seating
  • Sign language interpreters
  • Captioned media
  • Alternative formats for printed materials
  • Program relocation to a more accessible space

For questions regarding accommodations please contact our HR Department.


This resource from End Abuse of People With Disabilities includes accessibility tips to consider for virtual events and engagements. Consider language and disability accessibility needs for all virtual meetings.

PDF Resource

Text Resource



  Phone:  (920) 424-1166

  Fax: (920) 424- 2021


Monday - Friday 7:45 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

  Dempsey Hall 328
800 Algoma Blvd.
Oshkosh, WI 54901