introduction-to-accessibility-evaluation

Posted on December 27, 2019 Posted by

introduction-to-accessibility-evaluation

Introduction to Accessibility Evaluation


The WCAG 1.0 did not have any official way to audit the accessibility of the websites. This led to the creation of different non-official evaluation methodologies. For example, the European Union founded the Unified Web Evaluation Methodology or UWEM, which was never adapted to the new WCAG 2.

This time the W3C has not forgot this issue and have developed the Website Accessibility Conformance Evaluation Methodology or WCAG-EM, albeit six years after the publication of the WCAG 2. This document is still a “Note”, not an official “Recommendation”, but we can consider it a stable reference.

If you have ever used the UWEM, they were divided into two documents: one with the core procedure, and another with the tests you should perform to verify each guideline. The WCAG-EM only provides the core procedure. We will explain it in the next post ‘The evaluation procedure’.

To verify each succes criterion, you have to follow the Techniques documentation. For example, to test if a webpage conforms to the succes criteria 1.2.3, 1.2.5 and 1.2.7 (all related to “Audio-descriptions”), you have to follow the procedure of the technique G8: Providing a movie with extended audio descriptions. There are 591 techniques and procedures to take, so have a seat while you are evaluating a website, and it is absolutly out of the scope of this tutorial to explain each procedure.

Finally, bear in mind that with the WCAG-EM we are only evaluating a selection of pages of your website, so be careful what you state in your conformance claim. Remember that the WCAG 2 considers a website as a whole: full pages, processes, functionalities…

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introduction-to-accessibility-evaluation

Posted on December 27, 2019 Posted by Victoria Brooks

how-to-tell-everybody-that-your-webpage-is-ok

How to tell everybody that your webpage is ok


Once you have tested your webpages, you want to tell everyone that you have cared about accessibility. In WCAG 1.0 you had the fancy logos, but they had a great problem: everybody could use them despite of being accessible or not.

Nowadays, the W3C is unable to verify each website that uses the logo, so the WAI tries to fix this problem using a conformance claim with the new logos:

Single-A
Level A conformance, W3C WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0

<a href="http://www.w3.org/WAI/WCAG2A-Conformance" title="Explanation of WCAG 2.0 Level A Conformance"><img height="32" width="88" src="http://www.w3.org/WAI/wcag2A" alt="Level A conformance, W3C WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0"></a>

Double-A
Level Double-A conformance, W3C WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0

<a href="http://www.w3.org/WAI/WCAG2AA-Conformance" title="Explanation of WCAG 2.0 Level Double-A Conformance"><img height="32" width="88" src="http://www.w3.org/WAI/wcag2AA" alt="Level Double-A conformance, W3C WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0"></a>

Triple-A
Level Triple-A conformance, W3C WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0


<a href="http://www.w3.org/WAI/WCAG2AAA-Conformance"
title="Explanation of WCAG 2.0 Level Triple-A Conformance">
<img height="32" width="88" src="http://www.w3.org/WAI/wcag2AAA"
alt="Level Triple-A conformance, W3C WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0">
</a>

Both conformance icons and claims refer to a single webpage, unless the webmaster includes an explicit scope information explaining which pages are covered by the claim and the icon. The pages can be a series of pages (e.g. a checkout) or multiple related webpages (e.g. a subdomain).

If you are really cool, you can conform to WCAG 2.0 without making any claim, because conformance claims are not required. Just be good at your job!

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how-to-tell-everybody-that-your-webpage-is-ok

Posted on December 27, 2019 Posted by Victoria Brooks

what-if-i-cannot-control-user-generated-content

What if I cannot control user-generated content?


Imagine you have done a great job in designing your website. Now, it’s time for the users to add the content. But those users can be anyone, even outside of your organization, so you simply cannot be everywhere.

This point was a great problem with WCAG 1 conformance claims, so the WCAG 2 provides two options:

  1. If you monitor and repair the external-content errors on your webpages within 2 business days, you can use the normal claim of conformance.
  2. You can claim for a statement of partial conformance to that pages where, if certain parts were removed, they would conform. You can only use this partial conformance if that content is not under your control. The way to do it is adding the following text to the claim:
    • “This page does not conform, but would conform to WCAG 2.0 at level X if the following parts from uncontrolled sources were removed.”
    • A list with the description of that parts that users can identify

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what-if-i-cannot-control-user-generated-content

Posted on December 27, 2019 Posted by Victoria Brooks

webpages-conformance-levels

Webpages conformance levels


So, once you have tested the success criteria, you can state the conformance of your webpage into 3 levels:

  • Level Single-A (A): your webpage satisfies all the Single-A (A) success criteria.
  • Level Double-A (AA): your webpage satisfies all the Single-A (A) and Double-A (AA) success criteria.
  • Level Triple-A (AAA): your webpage satisfies all the Single-A (A), Double-A (AA) and Triple-A (AAA) success criteria.

Can you remember a webpage is a whole? So if your un-accessible webpages has an alternate accessible version that fulfills the criteria, then you can say that your webpage has achieved a level.

The WAI also suggests:

  • Although you get a conformance level (e.g. “A”), keep working on making a more accessible website and publishing any improvement you make (e.g. “We are level A, but we have also passes these level Double-A criteria…”
  • Level Triple-A is pretty hard to get and maintain, so be careful to state that a entire website gets it, especially with some contents (e.g. a place where everyone uploads videos, but nobody keeps an eye on their subtitles).

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