Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Web Accessibility Tip: Large Clickable Targets

Some mouse users have may have difficulty with fine motor control, so it is important that clickable targets be sufficiently large. Radio buttons and checkboxes should include properly-associated labels (using the element). Small icons or text, such as previous/next arrows or superscript links for footnotes, should be sufficiently large or combined with adjacent text into a single link.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Webinar: AT for Gardening & Outdoor Entertaining

Spring has sprung, and even though the weather may not seem cooperative, it's time to start thinking about planning your vegetable garden and dusting off the lawn chairs for those summer barbecues. The webinar will show you high tech gadgets and low tech tools to make planting, pruning, potting, and grilling a breeze for folks with a range of functional needs and abilities.

Register now and join WATAP and the Washington Access Fund for what will promise to be an informative, educational, and fun webinar for all. To register for this free webinar, please send an email to Leann at:, or by phone at (206) 328-5116 or TTY (888) 494-4775.
AT for Gardening and Outdoor Entertaining on Thursday, May 3rd from 10:30 - 11:45am.  

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Web Accessibility Tip: Do Not Require Unnecessary Form Data

One of the keys to creating highly accessible forms is to avoid as many errors as possible before the form is submitted. Ensure that forms are as simple and intuitive as possible, and don't require that a field be filled out if the content is not necessary (e.g., a telephone number to subscribe to an email discussion list). Errors can also be prevented by allowing informatoin to be entered in a number of logical formats. For example, allow a telephone number to be formatted: (123)456-7890, 123-456-7890, 123.456.7890, or 1234567890, as long as ten numerals are present. This data can easily be reformatted using scripting or database languages for further usage.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Web Accessibility Tip: Accessibility User Testing

Instead of conducting accessibility testing with users with disabilities (asking users to identify accessibility issues), it is almost always more effective to do usability testing (asking users to evaluate overall usability) with users with disabilities. While accessibility testing can be used to identify instances of accessibility – poor alt text here and a missing label there, fixing all significant instances of inaccessibility and non-compliance still might result in a poor experience for users with disabilities. Basic user testing that includes users with disabilities has a focus on the broader user experience with a site, yet still can identify specific accessibility issues. User testing with individuals with disabilities should be part of a broader testing plan that involves compliance checklists, automated tests, manual testing, and assistive technology testing.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Web Accessibility Tip: WCAG 2.0 and Reading Level

It is always a good idea to make content as readable and understandable as is suitable for the audience. For complex content (defined as that which requires a reading ability more advanced than the lower secondary education level), WCAG 2.0 Success Criterion 3.1.5 (Level AAA) requires that a more simplified and readable version of the content be provided. Much content cannot be made perfectly understandable at these levels (consider a college-level chemistry class, for example), thus it's a Level AAA success criterion. Regardless of the limitations for some content, for a page to be optimally accessible, it should be written so as to be easily readable and understandable to the target audience.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Web Accessibly Tip: Link Type Indicators

It is a good idea to inform users when a link goes to non-HTML content (such as a PDF file or Word document). It can be frustrating to activate a link and then realize that the link requires an external program or viewer. An icon (with appropriate alternative text) or text, such as "(PDF)", is sufficient. Because screen reader users commonly navigate by links, it is vital that the link type indicator icon or text be placed within the link, otherwise this information is readily available to sighted users, but not presented in the context of the link for screen reader users.