- [Instructor] Images can serve many different purposes,

from simple decoration to visuals of complex processes.

Using them in your online learning content

can be a great way to create visual representations

of your subject matter.

An important consideration when inserting images

into your content is how you'll make them available

to someone who is unable to see them.

When provided with a text representation of an image,

many people with sight impairments have the ability

to visualize the graphic.

A text representation of an image is another way to say

an image is alternative text.

Many text editors provide a place

for you to replace an image with alternative text.

The image will remain visible in your content,

but the text representation will be available

to those who need it the most.

When it's time to write alternative text,

simply think about the context of the image

within your content.

For example, consider this image of a beekeeper.

Three questions to consider are:

Am I using this image basically as decoration?

Is the image a visual example of something

I described thoroughly in the typed content?

Do I intend for the image to provide

additional information to supplement

a point I made in the content?

My approach to writing the alternative text

will differ depending upon the context

of how I use the image.

Let's take a closer look at each of these situations.

Here, the beekeeper image is just a decorative visual.

I added it to the end of this document

because I mentioned beekeeping

as a hobby I'd like to explore.

In this instance, the image doesn't need much.

If the decorative image were removed,

the quality of the content won't degrade.

So the alternative text could simply be

a couple of words to state what's in the image.

I think "Beekeeper collecting wax from a hive" will suffice.

When a vision-impaired learner hears this alternative text,

it will be clear that there's no important learning content

to be gleaned from the image.

Let's take a look at the images on this page.

Leading up to these images,

the topic has been an overview

of precautions to take while beekeeping,

and in the previous paragraph I talked about

what should be worn for safety

when working around the hives.

These two images are examples of safety clothing.

They are visual examples of something

I described thoroughly in the previous content.

So each of their alternative text will represent

an overview of what is seen in the pictures.

For example, to address the first image,

I could type "Beekeeper wearing a hat and veil,

"a one-piece long-sleeved jumpsuit and plastic gloves."

For the second image, I could type,

"Beekeeper wearing hat and screen,

"a one-piece long-sleeved jumpsuit and plastic gloves."

Let's see if we can apply what we've learned so far.

Here I've displayed an image of Nikola Tesla

near a list of a few of his inventions.

Would this be considered a decorative image

or an example image?

To answer that, remember to think about

the context of the image.

In this case, if I removed the image of Mr. Tesla,

the content would not suffer.

So this is a decorative image.

For its alternative text I would type "Nikola Tesla."

let's change the context so that the image

is an example of one of Mr. Tesla's inventions.

Because it is now an example,

we'll type as our alternative text,

an overview of what's seen in the image,

"A Tesla coil expending electrical current."

Finally, there may be times when you'll need an image

to supplement your content.

It's purpose will be to accompany a point

made in the content and to provide additional information.

Let's return to the image of the beekeeper collecting wax.

Let's say that the topic of this lecture

is a discussion on beehive management.

I'm using this image because it helps students

visualize a point I made about the number of beehives

that can be economically viable in one location.

The context of this image is neither a decoration,

nor an example.

In this context, it is some of the content,

so it will require a longer description

so my students can learn what I intend

for them to learn from it.

The long description should be

a part of the lecture content,

so all of the students can benefit from it.

So I'll type it near the image.

Here's another example of an image

requiring a long description because it is content.

The image demonstrates the life cycle of a deer tick

as it depends on the life cycle of the white footed mouse.

So I wrote a long description of the process

under the image.

Images that you've written a long description for

will still need an alternative text.

We'll treat the alternative text

for this life cycle image

as we would an example image.

I'll type, "Parasitic life cycle of the deer tick

"as it relies on the life cycle of the white footed mouse."

Deciding to use images is a great way

to help students visualize your content.

Alternative text is required for all images,

and a long description should be provided

when the context of the image requires it.