Approaching Accessibility

Providing real accessibility to disabled users has very little to do with the requirements of the law. It has much more to do with understanding how these users use the Internet, and the limitations and characteristics of the tools that they are required to work with to access the Internet.

For example, blind users typically use screen readers, such as JAWS, to access Web pages. Unlike the human eye, a screen reader cannot "scan" a page for relevant headings or words. Screen readers have to read every single word on the page, from top to bottom.

With that in mind, Web developers can begin to understand the importance of accessibility requirements and best practices, such as:

  • Providing a way for users to skip past the navigation at the top of every page
  • Providing in-page navigation so that users can find out what's on a page without having to hear the whole thing
  • Providing a quick way to go back to the top of the page

These rules of thumb aren't only for disabled users. They can also make Web pages more usable and accessible for non-disabled users. The things that we must do for disabled users turn out to be excellent practices for making sites easier to use for all users.

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Article ID: 43402
Created
Thu 11/30/17 4:39 PM
Modified
Mon 7/6/20 2:49 PM