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Job Req ID:  19498

Assistive Technology / Alternate Format Specialist


General Description:

The Assistive Technology/Alternate Format Specialist (AT/AF Specialist) will manage/oversee technology administration and materials conversion for disability services university-wide, including coordinating with school-based staff as well as hiring, training and supervising part-time/contractual staff, undergraduate and graduate student workers.  The AT/AF Specialist will be responsible for overseeing all technology related accommodations for student to include but not limited to managing and maintaining assistive technologies; coordinating the provision of alternative format textbooks and course materials in a timely way; researching, recommending and training on technologies; and maintaining a university wide database for managing data, accommodations and services such as exam accommodations and note taking among others. They will determine and communicate standards and best practices as well as training a team of student workers and administrative staff to support these processes, both centrally and within the schools. In addition, they will oversee/maintain the university-wide Student Disability Services’ websites, including maintaining its accessibility. The AT/AF Specialist will participate on divisional and/ or campus wide committees related to technology as well as providing training for campus stakeholders.  They will manage/project budgets for areas of responsibility. These actions will enable the AT/AF Specialist to remove barriers, collaborating with key partners and fostering an inclusive and accessible experience for students with disabilities.


Primary Responsibilities:

  • Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to, the following:


Manage Assistive Technology and Database (35%):

Assistive Technology:

  • Research, evaluate, recommend and maintain university-wide hardware and software to support accommodations, accessibility and inclusion.
  • Develop/maintain expertise on current and new assistive technologies such as Kurzweil, Dragon Naturally Speaking, Inspiration, Texthelp Read and Write, JAWS, Zoomtext, Math Type, and Ginger Software.
  • Develop and deliver training on assistive technology for students, faculty and staff
  • Establish best practices in use, deliver, training and maintenance of products, including university-wide and local licensing as appropriate.
  • Advise prospective and current students regarding accessibility services, technology, and related resources both within and outside the college


Data Management and Assessment:

  • Serve as liaison to vendor and university-wide to other SDS coordinators.
  • Manage upgrades/updates, take lead in addressing technical issues, and advise as well as gather feedback from SDS offices on ongoing development to ensure products are fully utilized.
  • Manage ongoing university-wide reporting, data collection and analysis.
  • Evaluate data management and use to determine impact, recommending revisions and improvements as needed.

Manage Alternate Format and other Accommodations Coordination (35%):

  • Collaborate as well as provide consultation to faculty/instructional technology to implement reasonable and appropriate accommodations as well as UDI.
  • Research best practice on an ongoing basis; proactively develop systems and services to determine and incorporate best practices. Collaborate with colleagues (national and local) as well as partners across campus to continually innovate and deliver services/accommodations in most proactive, inclusive way.


Alternate Format Materials Conversion:

  • Manage the university-wide materials conversion (text to alternative format) process for students, problem solving and recommending best approaches on a case by case basis.
  • Manage and train technical, administrative and student staff on these systems.
  • Support the schools in developing methods to expedite and track student requests for conversions and faculty members’ responses to requests for reading lists.
  • Keep SDS current on best practices, strategically recommending changes and new formats.

Notetaking Support:

  • Manage note taking technologies and graduate student/ administrative staff that support it.
  • Develop and maintain effective systems to support these technologies.
  • Keep abreast of new technologies, current trends and best practices in order to proactively implement changes.

Communications Access:

  • Manage the processes for acquiring and creating captioned videos and transcripts of videos.
  • Advise SDS staff and faculty members about how best to address requests, encouraging the proactive selection of pre-captioned videos, as appropriate.
  • Oversee/advise local SDS staff on arrangements for remote real-time transcription and remote ASL interpretation for students through locally contracted sources.
  • Collaborate with faculty to incorporate technologies and a Universal Design for Learning approach.
  • Provide guidance around accessible and inclusive approaches to campus community members, increasing awareness of electronic information technology accessibility, addressing barriers as proactively as possible.


Website Development and Maintenance (20%):

  • Develop, revise and maintain accessible content on the university-wide Student Disability Services websites, providing exemplary sites and including information about policies, processes, trainings, events, programming, etc.
  • Stay abreast of best practice in disability services, updating pages and adding new resources in a timely and accessible way.

Other Duties as Assigned (10%):

  • Serve on University and campus committees and working groups related to technology and accessibility.
  • Design and deliver trainings/workshops around assistive technologies.
  • Participate in ongoing professional development and training to keep current in disability services field and advise about proactive approaches to service and accommodation delivery.
  • Complete other tasks and initiatives as assigned.



  • Bachelor’s degree in a related discipline required.
  • Master’s degree or certification as an Assistive Technology Specialist preferred.



  • Minimum of five years of related experience required, including a minimum of 1 year experience focused on Assistive Technology and Alternate format work in a higher education disability services setting. Experience preferred in managing assistive technologies, including alternate formate conversions, databases and websites for disability services in a higher education setting.

Special Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

  • Working knowledge of Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, its 2008 amendments, and WCAG 2.0 as well as other appropriate laws pertaining to higher education and disabilities and the ability to ensure compliance for areas managed.
  • Proficiency with a wide array of assistive technologies and basic computer programs (Microsoft Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Zoom).
  • Knowledge of accessibility auditing and testing tools and strategies. Strong web accessibility skills, including knowledge of online access issues and means for addressing them.
  • The ability to manage and troubleshoot technical issues for assistive technologies, including hardware and software in a timely, efficient and respectful manner.
  • The ability to work effectively across campuses, traveling to be on site as needed; the position will be housed at the Homewood campus and will travel to Peabody, E. Baltimore (Medical/Nursing), Columbia (APL and Education), Harbor East (Carey) and DC (APL, SAIS).
  • The diplomatic and tactful nature required to build relationships quickly across cultures within the university and to work effectively with a wide range of people, including persons from diverse backgrounds.
  • An understanding of technology solutions relevant to persons with disabilities and the ability to anticipate students' needs, expectations, and requirements related to technology and with a focus on universal design for learning.
  • The ideal candidate will work closely with the Executive Director to make fiscally responsible budget projections based on daily operations and research accommodations to efficiently meet service obligations.
  • Experience working with Accommodate/Symplicity case management database software is highly desirable.
  • An understanding of assistive technologies for persons with disabilities, including some knowledge of/familiarity with Kurzweil, Dragon Naturally Speaking, Inspiration, Texthelp Read and Write, JAWS, Zoomtext, Math Type, and Ginger Software.
  • Demonstrated strong analytical skills to research and analyze technologies, data and information from a variety of sources to make sound recommendations and decisions.
  • The ability to collaborate effectively with colleagues and manage remote student staff to ensure their timely completion of assigned tasks.
  • The ability to develop and deliver technical trainings for students and staff.
  • The ability to set priorities to achieve objectives and to manage multiple, diverse assignments/projects, responding to requests in a timely, detail-oriented manner and setting standards for service delivery in the areas managed.
  • Collaborative, strategic problem-solving, planning and organizational skills.
  • Excellent judgment and sensitivity to the unique and confidential needs of students with disabilities.
  • Experience supporting diverse student populations.
  • Demonstrated ability to relate to students, faculty, staff, and the public.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced, student-oriented, and data driven environment.


Classified Title: Sr. Instructional Technologist 
Working Title: Assistive Technology / Alternate Format Specialist  ​​​​​
Role/Level/Range: ACRP/04/MD 
Starting Salary Range: Commensurate with Experience
Employee group: Full Time 
Schedule: Mon-Fri 8:30-5 
Exempt Status: Exempt  
Location: 01-MD:Homewood Campus 
Department name: 60009285-Student Health and Well-Being 
Personnel area: Homewood Student Affairs


The successful candidate(s) for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check.


If you are interested in applying for employment with The Johns Hopkins University and require special assistance or accommodation during any part of the pre-employment process, please contact the HR Business Services Office at jhurecruitment@jhu.edu. For TTY users, call via Maryland Relay or dial 711.


The following additional provisions may apply depending on which campus you will work.  Your recruiter will advise accordingly.


During the Influenza ("the flu") season, as a condition of employment, The Johns Hopkins Institutions require all employees who provide ongoing services to patients or work in patient care or clinical care areas to have an annual influenza vaccination or possess an approved medical or religious exception. Failure to meet this requirement may result in termination of employment.


The pre-employment physical for positions in clinical areas, laboratories, working with research subjects, or involving community contact requires documentation of immune status against Rubella (German measles), Rubeola (Measles), Mumps, Varicella (chickenpox), Hepatitis B and documentation of having received the Tdap (Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) vaccination. This may include documentation of having two (2) MMR vaccines; two (2) Varicella vaccines; or antibody status to these diseases from laboratory testing. Blood tests for immunities to these diseases are ordinarily included in the pre-employment physical exam except for those employees who provide results of blood tests or immunization documentation from their own health care providers. Any vaccinations required for these diseases will be given at no cost in our Occupational Health office.


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