Accessibility Testing

Abstract

Accessibility refers to the ability of individuals with disabilities to use a company’s digital assets such as websites, mobile applications, and PDF forms. The United States Government estimates 25% of adults are dealing with some form of disability. Yet, many times these users run into issues using digital assets. This leads to user frustration and revenue loss for the companies involved. Non-accessible assets can also lead to lawsuits. Digital assets require specialized templates, adherence to standards and the ability to test from a disability perspective. This paper provides insights into accessibility and how to approach testing.

The Guidelines

In 1998, The U.S. Government required federal agencies to make their electronic and informa- tion technology accessible to people with disabilities. This Act, known as Section 508, was enacted to eliminate barriers in information technology, to enable new opportunities for people with disabilities, and to encourage the development of technologies that will help achieve these goals. The standards are being revised continuously to reflect changes in market trends and technology. In addition to 508 guidelines, the European Commission working with the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) created Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 Meeting the 508 and WCAG guidelines are critical for a company to be accessibility compliant. If your content and digital assets can pass 508 and WCAG 2.1 guidelines, you are good to go to production.

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