Blackboard ALLY (ally.ac) is a tool we will be implementing within BREO at the end of January 2020. It evaluates content in BREO and helps improve the accessibility of BREO for students and staff.

For students

How do you prefer to engage with digital learning content? Do you read on your phone or tablet, use a screen reader, like to annotate and highlight, or listen to an audio version?

ALLY automatically provides content uploaded into BREO in accessible and alternative formats. This improves the student experience by enabling more effective study on mobile devices such as smart phones, eReaders and tablets. It removes the need for specialist software to open files and as such makes studying remotely or during your commute easier.

For students with additional needs who require audio, braille or easier to read formats, Ally allows them to convert files at the click of a mouse. Whether it is due to a diagnosed learning need or a study preference, Ally makes content available in the way that best meets each students individual needs.

Look for the ALLY icon next to content in BREO and click to download it.

Example of how the ALLY - A Icon appears next to content in BREO

Then select the alternative format you require.

A list of the different formats ALLY can create: Tagged PDF, HTML,EPUB,Electronic Braille, Audio, BeeLineReader, Translated Version

Need more help and guidance?


For staff colleagues

ALLY allows you to check the accessibility of content uploaded to BREO and gives advice and guidance about the level of accessibility. A small gauge appears next to existing files and new files you upload (see the example below). Click the gauge to review the guidance and to get help making changes - some can be made directly online. ALLY helpful how to guides which help you develop your skills as you go. Information about accessibility is only visible to staff and not to students.

Gauges and feedback visible to staff only.

There is no expectation that all existing content will be immediately made accessible, the implementation of ALLY is focused upon long-term improvement of the accessibility of BREO, enhancing the student experience, and helping colleagues meet the legislative requirements set out in UK law.

Need more help and guidance?


Feedback, ideas and suggestions about ALLY?

We would welcome any questions, ideas or suggestions about resources for ALLY. You can reach the Digital Learning team at ally@beds.ac.uk