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Online Accessibility Rubric

Page history last edited by Tammy 4 years, 1 month ago

Introduction

Thank you for your interest in making online material accessible to everyone possible. Words can't describe how important it is. Many people think it is not a "big deal," but it is. Many people are short on time, but you must make time. Always remember, doing something is better than doing nothing. Doing nothing is the worst thing that you can do.

In creating this rubric, we wanted to pull everything together in one place to make it easier to evaluate material. This Wiki is a working document. We welcome any feedback or additions that you can provide.

Online Accessibility Rubric

The rubric to criterion 13 is adapted from Web content accessibility guidelines (WCAG) 2.1​ (2018), and the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Standards and Guidelines, Appendix C to Part 1194–Functional Performance Criteria and Technical Requirements, Chapter 3: Functional Performance Criteria (2017, p. 5837).

Definitions of the functional performance criteria are at the bottom of the page.* This rubric complies with Appendix A to Part 1194, Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act: Application and Scoping Requirements, E207.2 WCAG Conformance. Most Web Design Best Practices were found in Anderson et. al (2010).

Criterion 1: Text Alternatives

Provide text for any content that is not text. This includes but is not limited to images, and videos, audio files. Videos, audio files, or any other time-based media at least has a description. There are exceptions to criterion 1.1.1 in the WCAG 2.1

Testing for Criterion 1

  • WAVE Web Accessibility Tool by WebAIM: http://wave.webaim.org/
  • Verify this criterion with a screen reader if possible.

Standards for Criterion 1:

Appendix C to Part 1194 302.1 and 302.2.* WCAG 2.1 Criterion 1.1.1.

Criterion 2: Time-based Media

Provide alternatives for time-based media. All alternatives must be clearly labeled and have equivalent content to the time-based media.

Testing for Criterion 2

  • Check each criterion by inspecting the content manually.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 2

  • All pre-recorded audio content in synchronized media has sign language interpretation.
  • Allows the option of listening to additional audio to describe the pre-recorded video content in synchronized media while pausing the video if needed.
  • All pre-recorded synchronized media and video-only media has an alternative. A text alternative is required.
  • An alternative is provided for live audio-only content using a captioning service.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 2

  • Captions are provided for all live audio content in synchronized media.
  • Captions are provided for all pre-recorded audio content in synchronized media.
  • All pre-recorded audio-only and synchronized media (e.g. audio/video content) has a text-based version or a transcript.
  • All prerecorded video in synchronized media has audio descriptions provided during pauses if needed.
  • All pre-recorded video-only content has a separate audio track or text version. 

Standards for Criterion 2:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2, 302.4, and 302.5.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 1.2.1-9

Criterion 3: Adaptable

Create content that can be presented in different ways (for example simpler layout) without losing information or structure. Elements should be used for their intended purpose to ensure the user interprets elements properly, proper function of elements with assistive technology and the user can employ features of the Internet Browsers.

Testing for Criterion 3

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 3

  • The purpose of all User Interface Components, icons, and regions can be determined through the use of technology or code.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 3

  • Markup is used to indicate the structure so that accessibility technology can convey that information to the user, such as using headings, lists, and emphasized text. Also, implied information and relationships in multimedia are present when the format changes.
  • The reading order makes sense. Sequential information is the same for alternative formats.
  • Instructions don't rely on sensory components alone (e.g. press the blue button or when you hear a bell ...).
  • Do not force the content to be viewed in a certain way like portrait or landscape. Some examples are listed in WCAG 2.1, Criterion 1.3.4.
  • When defining input fields collecting information about the user, it should state its intended purpose. There is a list of Input Purposes for User Interface Components in the WCAG 2.1. If the input does not fall into these categories, there should be technology used or code written to identifying the meaning.

Standards for Criterion 3:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2, 302.3, 302.4, 302.5 and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 1.3.1-6.

Criterion 4: Distinguishable

Make it easier for users to see and hear content including separating foreground from background.

Testing for Criterion 4

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 4

  • All text and images of text have a contrast ratio of at least 7:1. Exceptions listed for Criterion 1.4.6.
  • All pre-recorded audio speeches have either no background sounds, the ability to turn off background sounds, or background sounds that are 20 dB lower than the audio speech.
  • All blocks of text have
    • foreground and background colors that can be selected by the user,
    • a width that is no wider than 80 characters,
    • no text justification,
    • at least a space and a half within paragraphs,
    • at least 1.5 times the line spacing between paragraphs, and
    • the ability to resize text up to 200 percent without assistive technologies and without needing to scroll horizontally.
  • Use text instead of an image unless you can't achieve the same effect otherwise when the user can customize the output.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 4

  • Color alone isn't used to distinguish an element.
  • All audio that automatically plays longer than 3 seconds can be paused or stopped. Audio volume for this content can be controlled independently.
  • All text and images of text have a contrast ratio of at least 4.5:1. Exceptions listed for Criterion 1.4.3.
  • Except for captions and images of text, all text can be resized up to 200 percent without a loss of content quality or functionality and without assistive technologies.
  • Use text instead of an image unless you can't achieve the same effect otherwise. Exceptions listed for Criterion 1.4.5.
  • Content will display and function properly without requiring scrolling in two dimensions unless the content would be unusable or lose meaning. Pixel ranges based on 400% zoom listed for Criterion 1.4.10.
  • The user can change the style to at least a line height of 1.5 times, paragraph spacing of 2 times, Letter spacing 0.12 times, and word spacing to at 0.16 times the font size without losing content or function for languages this is possible.
  • When using code or technology to add and remove content when the user hovers with the mouse or access an element with the keyboard, the content remains visible until the user dismisses it, moves the mouse, tabs to something else with the keyboard, or the information is no longer valid. This user can dismiss the content without moving the mouse or tabbing to another element with the keyboard unless it is an error message.

Standards for Criterion 4:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2, 302.3, 302.5 and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 1.4.1-13

Criterion 5: Keyboard Accessible

Make all functionality available from a keyboard.

Testing for Criterion 5

  • Each criterion must be tested with several common browsers and Adobe Reader.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 5

  • All functionality is keyboard accessible and focus can be moved away from each component without exception.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 5

  • All functionality is keyboard accessible.
  • The user can move to and from each component using the keyboard.
  • If a keyboard shortcut is one character, either the user can turn the shortcut off, they can change the shortcut, or the shortcut is only active when the element has focus.

Standards for Criterion 5:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2, 302.7 and 302.8.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 2.1.1-4

Criterion 6: Enough Time

Provide users enough time to read and use content.

Testing for Criterion 6

  • Check each criterion by inspecting the content manually.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 6

  • Timing is not essential except for non-interactive synchronized media and real time events.
  • All interruptions can be postponed except in emergency situations.
  • User can continue an activity without losing data when a session expires and they need to authenticate.
  • Users are notified how long they can be inactive and not lose data unless the data is preserved for more than 20 hours. Privacy considerations are given reservation as an approach to satisfy this success criterion.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 6

  • If there are time limits, there must be the ability to turn them off, adjust them or extend them. Exceptions are listed for Criterion 2.2.1.
  • Users can pause, stop, or hide all automated moving, blinking, scrolling content that lasts longer than 5 seconds unless it is essential to the activity. This is true for auto-updating content unless the user can control the frequency of the updated material. Examples are given for Criterion 2.2.2

Standards for Criterion 6:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2, 302.7, 302.8 and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 2.2.1-6

Criterion 7: Seizures

Do not design content in a way that is known to cause seizures.

Testing for Criterion 7

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 7

  • Doesn't contain anything that flashes more than three times a second.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 7

  • Doesn't contain anything that flashes more than three times a second or which falls below the general and red flash thresholds.
  • Interactive motion animation can be disabled unless the animation is essential to functionality or content.

Standards for Criterion 7:

WCAG 2.1 Criteria 2.3.1-3

Criterion 8: Navigable

Provide ways to help users navigate, find content, and determine where they are on the screen/website.

Testing for Criterion 8

  • Each criterion must be tested with several common browsers and Adobe Reader, or by inspecting the content manually.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 8

  • Users are provided with information about their location within the website, for example, by being provided with a breadcrumb trail.
  • All content is organized by section headings.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 8

  • There are multiple ways to locate webpages except when the page is a result of a step in a process.
  • Use headings, bookmarks and page numbers in a PDF.
  • Headings and labels describe their content or purpose.
  • There is a visual cue that a component is selected and the order when selecting the tab key makes sense. Testing with several common browsers is required.
  • Can skip blocks of content that are repeated on multiple webpages.
  • Webpage or document titles describe their purpose.
  • The purpose of all links can be determined by its text unless it would make the link ambiguous to users in general.

Standards for Criterion 8:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2, 302.7, 302.8, and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 2.4.1-10

Criterion 9: Input Modalities

Make it easier to use peripheral devices like a mouse, trackball, etc.

Testing for Criterion 9

  • Check each criterion by inspecting the content manually.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 9

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 9

  • All functionality can be operated with a single pointer that is not path dependent unless multi-point or path based actions are necessary.
  • Using a mouse as an example for simplicity: For single pointer actions either 1) pressing the mouse button has no action, 2) releasing the button completes the function with an option to abort, 3) releasing the button reverses the event when pressing the mouse button, or 4) pressing the button is necessary to complete the function.
  • Visible textual labels of user interface components are contained in the name attribute too.
  • User input activated by device or user motion can be operated by using user interface components too. Motion activation can be cancelled. There are exceptions to Criterion 2.5.5 in the WCAG 2.1

Standards for Criterion 9:

WCAG 2.1 Criteria 2.5.1-6

Criterion 10: Readable

Make text content readable and understandable.

Testing for Criterion 10

  • Check each criterion by inspecting the content manually.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 10

  • When text requires an advanced reading level, there is a version that does not require more than a ninth grade reading level.
  • A mechanism to pronounce words is available when needed to understand its meaning.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 10

  • Identify definitions idioms and jargon. An example would be a word that links to a glossary on the same page.
  • Identify the meanings of acronyms.
  • If multiple languages are present, indicate the language of the passages that differ from the webpage. Exceptions listed for Criterion 3.1.2.
  • Each webpage has a default human language.

Standards for Criterion 10:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2 and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 3.1.1-6

Criterion 11: Predictable

Make webpages appear and operate in predictable ways.

Testing for Criterion 11

  • Each criterion must be tested with several common browsers or by inspecting the content manually. Verify this criteria with a screen reader if possible.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 11

  • Changes of context are initiated only by the user or they can turn this feature off.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 11

  • Navigation that appears on multiple webpages occur in the same relative order unless a change is initiated by the user.
  • PDFs have consistent page numbers or running headings.
  • Components that have the same functionality are consistently identified.
  • When an element received focus, the context does not automatically change.
  • When changing a setting for the interface, the context does not automatically change unless the user is advised prior to changing the setting.

Standards for Criterion 11:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2 and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 3.2.1-5

Criterion 12: Input Assistance (HTML and PDF)

Testing for Criterion 12

  • Each criterion must be tested with several common browsers or by inspecting the content manually.

Optimum Accessibility for Criterion 12

  • Context sensitive help is provided.
  • If user input is required, the submissions are either reversible, checked for input errors with the opportunity to correct them, or reviewed by the user and can be corrected prior to the final submission.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 12

  • When user input errors are detected, suggestions to correct the error are described unless it would jeopardize security or purpose of content.
  • For user inputed legal and financial information that will be stored, submissions can be checked and edited by the user and submissions are reversible. More information listed for Criterion 3.3.4.
  • Errors resulting from user input are described in text and the item producing the error is identified.
  • Labels or instructions are provided when a user needs to enter information.

Standards for Criterion 12:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2 and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 3.3.1-6

Criterion 13: Compatible

Testing for Criterion 13

  • W3C markup Validation service. http://validator.w3.org/
  • WAVE can be used to find violations in HTML content, but manual inspection is more reliable.
  • The rest can be tested manually.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 13

  • Good practices, such as start and end tags, proper nesting of elements, no duplicate elements and IDs are unique, are followed.
  • All user interface components have names and roles that can be determined and are available to user agents including assistive technologies.
  • An element doesn't need focus for a status messages to be retrieved by assistive technologies because it is associated through its role or properties.

Standards for Criterion 13:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2 and 302.9.* WCAG 2.1 Criteria 4.1.1-3

Criterion 14: Web Design

Testing for Criterion 14

  • Inspect the content manually.

Necessary Accessibility for Criterion 14

  • Conforms to Web Design Conventions. A good resource is written by Anderson et. al (2010).

Standards for Criterion 14:

Appendix C to Part 1194: 302.1, 302.2 and 302.9.*

*Functional Performance Criteria and Technical Requirements (Appendix C to Part 1194)

302.1. Without Vision. Where a visual mode of operation is provided, ICT shall provide at least one mode of operation that doesn't require user vision.

302.2. With Limited Vision. Where a visual mode of operation is provided, ICT shall provide at least one mode of operation that enables users to make use of limited vision.

302.3. Without perception of color. Where a visual mode of operation is provided, ICT shall provide at least one visual mode of operation that doesn't require user perception of color.

302.4. Without Hearing. Where an audible mode of operation is provided, ICT shall provide at least one mode of operation that doesn't require user hearing.

302.5. With Limited Hearing. Where an audible mode of operation is provided, ICT shall provide at least one mode of operation that enables users to make use of limited hearing.

302.6. Without Speech. In response to a comment made by a coalition of disability rights organizations, the Board added the phrase where ‘‘speech is used for input, control or operation’’ to clarify in the final rule when this FPC is applied.

302.7. With Limited Manipulation. Where a manual mode of operation is provided, ICT shall provide at least one mode of operation that doesn't require fine motor control or simultaneous manual operations.

302.8. With Limited Reach and Strength. Where a manual mode of operation is provided, ICT shall provide at least one mode of operation that is operable with limited reach and limited strength.

302.9. With Limited Language, Cognitive, and Learning Abilities. ICT shall provide features making its use by individuals with limited cognitive, language, and learning abilities simpler and easier.

References

Anderson, E., DeBold, V., Featherstone, D., Gunther, L., Jacobs, D., Jensen-Inman, L., ... Walter, A. (2010). Interact with Web standards: A holistic approach to Web design. Berkeley, CA: New Riders.

Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Standards and Guidelines 82 Fed. Reg. 5790 (January, 18, 2017) (to be codified at 36 C.F.R. pt. 1193 & 1194)

World Wide Web Consortium. (2008). Web content accessibility guidelines (WCAG) 2.1. Retrieved from http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG21/

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