Accessibility and how to use?

Technical Report - Gemma Buckland

 

What is accessibility:

Accessibility involves two key issues which are how users with disabilities access electronic information and how web designers and developers enable that the website pages can be functioned by users with disabilities. The user with the disability is to identify the tools that are provided to help with the problem they face on the website. For the website designer and web developer the challenge is to remove all the obstacles that prevent accessibility to the website pages.

 

Why do you we need to have accessibility:

About 20% of people in the UK don’t have access to the web as many websites to date don’t have any web accessibility features which prevents disabled users from using. This creates a divide from users with disabilities and non-disabled people which isn’t social and ethically correct every website should have accessibility feature available for use.

The disability that we need to provide accessibility:

  • Blindness- People who are blind or partially blind face obstacles this can be changed by either having text-to-braille hardware or text-to-speech software which once scrolls across a section of the website audio will describe the section.
  • Poor eyesight and colour blindness- The way to overcome this obstacle is by having a feature which enlargers pictures and texts so they will be easily visible.
  • Mobility disabilities– This is difficulty to use hands or tremors, this disability they don’t have difficulty with the website content however they face problems with navigating the website but coding is needed to allow access and navigation via keyboard or single switch device such as joystick for instance, people with a mobility disability can easily browse the web and access information just like everyone else.
  • Hearing and deafness– This isn’t a problem with the visual aspects of the website but for videos and other audio to overcome this would be too place subtitles or sign language alongside the videos.

 

  • Perceivable
    1. Provide text alternatives for any non-text content
    2. Provide alternatives for time-based media
    3. Create content that can be presented in a simpler layout without losing information or structure
    4. Make it easier for users to see and hear content
  • Operable
    1. Make all functionality available from a keyboard
    2. Provide users enough time to read and use content
    3. Do not design content in a way to trigger seizures
    4. Help users navigate
  • Understandable
    1. Make text content readable easily
    2. Make the page appear and operate in a predictable way
    3. Help users avoid and correct mistakes
  • Robust
    1. Maximise compatibility with current and future users, including assistive technologies

 

How to ensure my website has accessibility and the plugin used:

The basic of accessibility are easy to implement if you know and have a good understanding of the needs of your users. To make accessible feature within your website you can either manually code your website or you can find a more suitable plugin. The plugin that I have used for the creating of the website for accessibility is WP Accessibility Helper this is a plugin that is most suitable for the use on the group website as this plugin provides different feature such as:

  • Skip links menu
  • Reset font size button added (when script base font resize option selected)
  • Skip link inside accessibility sidebar
  • Font resize (REM or ZOOM or SCRIPT)
  • DOM Scanner – check pages and post for accessibility errors, like image alt, links role and titles, and much more.
  • Custom colours for contrast mode
  • Lights Off mode
  • Actions & Filters Hooks was added (please read FAQ section)
  • Custom logo position

 

 

However, using only this plugin this doesn’t cover all disabilities so therefore doesn’t make the website fully accessibly which therefore doesn’t make this plugin the best so therefore with this plugin either another plugin could be found or manual coding to go alongside the existing plugin.

References:

https://www.adobe.com/accessibility/gettingstarted.html

http://www.web-accessibility.org.uk/

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