Print Disability or Print-based Disability: a disability – such as a visual impairment, learning disability, physical disability, or other disability – that impedes a person’s ability to access print in the standard way.
Alternate format materials: are electronic, audio, Braille, or large print versions of standard print educational materials (e.g. textbooks, handouts, college publications, novels, student guides, and/or library materials, etc.) in formats accessible and usable by individuals with disabilities. Electronic versions include, but are not limited to, e-text, scanned text, and web-based text.
Click on the link below (Request Form) and complete a separate form for each book request to be submitted. Please note the fields with an asterisk (*) are required. Any information missing may result in delaying the request being filled. E-texts (PDF, DOC, TXT) will be used solely for the eligible student’s own educational purposes and will not be copied, duplicated and/or sold for use by others.
By filling out the Request Form, you (student) are verifying that you own a physical copy of all materials requested in alternative format, purchased at the same cost (new or used) or rented as other students. (Note: You may be asked to show purchase/rental reciept for textbooks.) You understand that you must be currently registered at Houston Community College and enrolled in the particular class or classes for which you are requesting alternatively formatted materials. You agree not to copy or reproduce alternatively formatted materials, nor allow anyone else to do so, pursuant to the Copyright Revision Act of 1976 as amended (17 USC §101 et seq.).
Please request materials 30 days (minimum) prior to class start date. Requesting materials on first day of class or later in semester can delay actual receipt of materials from publisher. Depending on the format requested, materials can take up to 12 weeks to receive and distribute. Keep in mind that publishers do not issue audio files of the textbooks, large print or Braille versions of textbooks.
Request Form (Click on the link to go to the form.)
Alternate Format Textbook Request
While You are Waiting for Your Alt Media…
If you anticipate needing access to information within the materials or textbooks after making your request via the Request Form, you may self-scan for yourself in advance that portion of the materials you anticipate needing during the wait for your materials/textbooks to be released. Check your syllabus and calendar to see what chapter/reading is due when to determine if you need to self-scan. See “Self-Scan” if you need assistance with self-scanning.
One option available to you: you may want to self-scan hard copy printed materials when the amount of material involved is small, and you want the materials very quickly. There are scanners located at various labs and libraries available to use throughout the HCC college campuses. Students with print-based disabilities may use any of the scanners and software at no charge. Students registered with the Ability Services offices who are unable to use the self-scanners due to a disability may request assistance from the Assistive Technology Lab staff (limit 20 minutes/day scanning assistance). Because the AT labs are very busy, an advance appointment with ADA Technician or staff is highly encouraged and suggested if scanning assistance/instruction is needed. Check with your counselor for locations and assistance.
There are many databases and inventories of electronic books and materials (some in an accessible format, others not). You may be able to locate an existing electronic copy of the book you need by yourself. We will add to the following list as we become aware of additional resources.
Note: E-texts/electronic textbooks are not necessarily accessible or wholly accessible or only parts are accessible with screen reading technology. Be sure to address accessibility/screen reading technology with the publisher or website before purchasing or renting!
Links to eBook Sites
- BookShare: You can set up a free membership with proper documentation. An online library of digital books for people with print disabilities with 285,117 titles and growing. Books, newspapers, textbooks are converted to DAISY 3 text files that work with screen readers, self-voicing synthetic-voice DAISY players, portable self-voicing DAISY players, and scan-and-read software such as Kurzweil K1000 and K3000, WYNN, and OpenBook. BRF (Braille Refreshable Format)-digital Braille for use with Braille embossers and refreshable Braille device are also available. More and more textbook publishers are contributing textbooks to Bookshare for students with print-based disabilities.
- Learning Ally: Requires annual membership fee. Downloadable audio files.
- Project Gutenberg
- National Library Service: free library program of braille and audio materials circulated to eligible borrowers in the United States by postage-free mail.
- Audible: 30-day trial. After the trial, your paid membership will begin at $14.95 per month. With your membership, you will receive one credit every month, good for any audiobook on Audible.
- LearnOutLoud: Subscription plans
- LibriVox:Free public domain audiobooks. Read by volunteers from around the world.
- Naxos Audiobooks: Not free, purchase MP4 formatted, downloadable audio books from classics to modern.
- Manybooks: Free subscription, more than 29,000 eBooks available for Kindle, Nook, iPad and most other eReaders, and they're all free!
- Baen Free Library: Free subscrption
- Podiobooks: "Serialized audio book versions available on our site are really free." Site does accept donations.
- Read How You Want: Large Print, Braille, Daisy formatted books - books are printed on demand and our electronic formats are delivered on demand.
- Hathi Trust Digital Library: HathiTrust is a partnership of academic & research institutions, offering a collection of millions of titles digitized from libraries around the world.
- APH Louis: The Louis Database contains information on approximately 403,880 titles in accessible formats, including braille, large print, sound recording and electronic files.
- Open Library
- OpenStax: OpenStax College is a nonprofit organization committed to improving student access to quality learning materials. Our free textbooks are developed and peer-reviewed by educators to ensure they are readable, accurate, and meet the scope and sequence requirements of your course. OpenStax College is an initiative of Rice University and is made possible through the generous support of several philanthropic foundations. OpenStax utilizes Bookshare to provide accessible versions of our books for students with disabilities.
- World Wide Braille Producers: All ages. Maintained by the Braille Planet, a list of braille producers, some of which have Web pages. Organized by USA zip code numbers.
- Talking Tapes (Textbooks on Tape): All ages. A nonprofit organization that provides textbooks on audio tape for individuals from elementary through post-graduate school. Services provided to schools, teachers, parents, and students. School districts or individuals may apply for services. Minimal cost per item.
- Braille and Talking Books Libraries: All ages. Regional and subregional libraries of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS/BPH), Library of Congress. Free of cost to eligible members. Services include books in Braille and recorded formats, magazines, equipment on loan, catalogs, bibliographies, music materials, and educational print and audiovisual materials about blindness, disability, and rehabilitation. These materials are generally for pleasure reading (i.e., not textbooks).
- VitalSource: Bookshelf users can access content from more than 500 of the world's top academic publishers whenever and wherever they choose--laptop, desktop or mobile device--and can download content directly or access it via browser. Over 4 million users on 6,000 campuses worldwide have used Bookshelf.Bookshelf is now available for Mac®, Windows®, iOS™, and Android™. Online or off, everything stays in sync. (NOTE: VitalSource aquired CourseSmart March 03, 2014)
- CourseSmart: (NOTE: VitalSource aquired CourseSmart March 03, 2014) CourseSmartis committed to providing an equal opportunity for all to benefit from its low eTextbook pricing. We strive to reduce barriers to delivering educational content on a timely basis to all customers. CourseSmart endeavors to sell textbooks that meet Section 508 Guidelines (http://www.section508.gov/) across the widest possible selection of textbook titles. CourseSmart has established a partnership with AccessText Network to include CourseSmart eTextbooks in ATN's Federated Search. Additionally, CourseSmart is a partner with ATN's Student E-rent Pilot Project (STEPP), a U.S. Department of Education, FIPSE grant project aimed to improve low-cost access to higher education textbooks for all students, including those with print-related disabilities. Textbook publishers partners with CourseSmart include:
- Cengage Learning
- Macmillan Higher Education
- McGraw–Hill Education
- John Wiley & Sons
- American Technical Publishers, Inc.
- BarCharts Publishing, Inc.
- Elsevier, Inc.
- F.A. Davis Company
- Jones & Bartlett Learning
- O'Reilly Press
- Oxford University Press, Inc.
- Princeton University Press
- SAGE Publications, Inc.
- Taylor and Francis Group
- W.W. Norton & Company
- Wolters Kluwer Health