We want all of our digital visitors to have a rich, easy-to-use digital experience consistent with the TWU brand. The TWU website, by law, must accommodate those with disabilities. We make every effort to make our pages accessible to all users.
What should you do to make sure your web content is accessible?
Add alternate text to images
Fill in the alternate (alt) text field for EVERY image inserted into your web pages. Alternate text is a short description of the scene within the image. Avoid phrases like "logo," "image of," "photo." It should include any text that is part of the graphic. The alt text is read out loud by a screen reader and shows up if images have been disabled in a browser. If an image contains text, use that text as the alternate text.
Provide a longer text alternative for infographics
For images that are "information-dense" (such as diagrams and flowcharts), we recommend using HTML to render the information instead of using the image file. However, if that is not possible, you will still have to provide a text alternative. We recommend that this description resides on the same page, with a link before the infographic to the text alternative (e.g., "text alternative for web accessibility infographic"). Before the text alternative, include a heading for it, such as "Text Alternative." (If the text alternative is on the same page, then the link will be a jump link; otherwise, it will link out to the page on which the text alternative resides.)
Closed-caption ALL videos
Video that is embedded within a web page must be captioned. Although you can use the software of your choice, we recommend YouTube. (If you are not sure what file format to use, see Supported YouTube file formats.) YouTube supports the ability to upload a transcript, which it can read and try to sync for auto-captioning. However, while automatic captions can be used as a starting point, they often prove wildly inaccurate and thus, should not be relied upon as the sole resource for the captions. Editing is required.
Use headings within the content
Format your content with Heading tags instead of bolding and/or italicizing paragraphs. There are six different Heading options (Heading 1, Heading 2, Heading 3, etc.). Use them in descending order to keep your content hierarchically organized.
TWU web pages should not depend on any animated elements to convey essential content, unless that element can be made accessible in another way. Flash should not be used.
PDFs present a host of accessibility issues and complications. Wherever possible, we recommend making information available in a web-based format.
An accessible PDF is a PDF with an underlying structure, known as tags. Similar to HTML, these tags provide context to the document.
Microsoft Word is the most common tool used at TWU to export to PDF. The following are guidelines for preparing a Microsoft Word document to ensure success as a PDF:
- Do not lock the document
- Include alt text for images and objects.
- Label column headers and column rows.
- Employ heading and body copy styles.
- Use short titles in the headings.
- Confirm headers are in contextual order.
- Provide descriptions for hyperlink destinations.
- Use simple table structures and do not allow blank cells.
- Avoid repeated tabs, spaces, or paragraph breaks.
- Do not include floating objects.
- Do not include watermarks.
- Include closed captioning for audio embeds.
Online Interactive Forms
Forms should be designed and tagged for those using assistive technologies. This includes ensuring titles and descriptions of input fields are read by screen readers in a logical order clearly identifying the requested information for each field. Instructions for making forms accessible from WebAIM.org.
What should you do to make Microsoft Office documents accessible?
All Microsoft Office files should be made accessible whether they are being delivered on the TWU website, through a learning management system, or by email. Instructions below:
For more information on website accessibility:
- Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act requires that Federal agencies' electronic and information technology is accessible to people with disabilities, including employees and members of the public.
- Web Accessibility Initiative of the World Wide Web Consortium
- What is Web Accessibility? by Trenton Moss on A List Apart