Accessibility Related Articles
The following articles address different aspects of accessibility. The purpose of this section is to increase the awareness of accessibility, and to explain commonly encountered, but rarely discussed problems.
You have probably seen forms where you need to enter a string of characters in order to submit the form. This is to ensure that only people can submit a form, but automatic systems cannot, in order to prevent spam. This original solution is, however, not accessible for many people with disabilities. In this article I will offer solutions which you can implement to ensure access to all.
If you are a web developer, you might also be interested in:
What's necessary for some, is good for all. Creating accessible web sites does not only help people with disabilities, but also enhances a site's search engine optimization techniques. This article will provide examples on how accessible solutions can enhance SEO.
A frequently asked question is if documents posted on the web have to be accessible, and follow web accessibility standards and guidelines.The quick answer is "yes", but read this article to find out why.
Don't forget to download our free web accessibility workbook
During my consulting practice, many times I hear that a site was speaking with JAWS, so it must be accessible/WCAG conformant/Section 508 compliant. In this article I will show how JAWS works, when can we use it for testing, and why testing with JAWS or any screen reader only, we cannot establish the accessibility of a web site. In addition, you can read about JAWS scripting.
As you are reading this article, you have probably decided to make your web site accessible for people with disabilities. You are on the right track to bringing many more visitors to your site. Now I will show you what steps you need to take to design accessible web sites, or to turn your current site into an accessible one. I will offer you suggestions to eliminate unnecessary costs and to minimize the time without compromising the level of accessibility.
Besides looking at the functional requirements of a content management system (cms), it is also important to consider picking one which will be accessible for people with disabilities. Often times, the accessibility of a CMS increases its usability as well. This article will provide suggestions on finding an accessible cms which will provide the necessary functional requirements.
One way to expose accessibility features of your product is to create a Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) to detail how you comply with the federal Section 508 standards. This way, you save valuable research time for interested agencies, and get much closer to sell your product to companies and government agencies who require accessibility. While VPATs are currently used to describe Section 508 compliance, any accessibility standards and guidelines, such as WCAG can be applied in a similar format to the VPAT.
It is not widely known that a government procurement procedure includes checking for Section 508 compliance. Section 508 requires accessibility for people with disabilities when the Federal Government develops, procures, maintains and uses products. If a product does not comply with this legislation, in most circumstances it is automatically disqualified. If you were still able to sell products to the government which were not Section 508 compliant, most likely the procurement process was not properly administered.
Often times we are asked to determine to what percentage is our web site accessible. While this measurement helps us fill in a questionaire, in itself it does not allow us to learn much about the extent of accessibility. This article will explain why we should not measure accessibility in percentage and what other ways we can use to provide a more accurate estimate.
There are two major approaches to testing the accessibility of web pages. The older one is manual accessibility testing, using a browser, a text editor and our best judgment. The newer method is the use of automated web accessibility testing tools. This article will explore the benefits of both approaches and will suggest how to combine both methods to achieve better results in a shorter amount of time.