Comprehension of Digital Accessibility

To ensure that persons with a range of disabilities can use the service, product, or function, digital accessibility produces accessible digital environments and products.

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which was enacted by the US Congress in 1990, people with sensory, cognitive, and physical impairments or disabilities must be able to enter both public and private areas. The ADA is broadened to include assistive or adaptive technologies for digital accessibility.

You may be wondering what this means for your company and how to comply with digital accessibility. At QualityLogic, we assist organizations with the shift to digitally accessible technologies. With over 30 years of quality assurance experience, we are the company to contact.

Electronic Accessibility Laws

As of the time of this writing, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) continues to hold the long-held opinion that the ADA covers digital accessibility and has not explicitly extended ADA provisions to address digital accessibility.

Other regulations, however, can be examined via the lens of digital accessibility. Section 508 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act mandates that federal departments and agencies make reasonable efforts to provide information via systems that are equally accessible to people with disabilities. If they are unable to do so, they must provide alternative access methods for people with disabilities to the data and information that these information systems provide. Accessibility for people with disabilities must be equivalent to that for people without disabilities.

The Communications Act of 1934 was amended in 2010 by the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CCVA), which established new criteria to ensure that current technology is accessible to individuals with disabilities. Title I of the bill specifies accessibility criteria for “advanced” telecommunications goods and services, while Title II establishes accessibility requirements for televisions, television services, television programs, and streaming video.

In 2016, the European Union adopted its own legislation with the implementation of Directive (EU) 2016/2102, which harmonized accessibility standards across the EU. A directive is a piece of European Union legislation that demands a particular objective while leaving the means of achieving it to the member states.

Illustrations of Digital Accessibility

The following are typical examples of digital accessibility on a well-designed website:

Screen readers and other assistive technologies cannot understand images on screens, but their substitute text can. Every visual element must have a full-text equivalent, such as the option to examine an image’s description or the text added there. This can be crucial for flowcharts, schematics, graphs, maps, menu buttons, infographics, and explanation-based presentations.

As long as they have access to a keyboard, a person with a disability can navigate using the keyboard instead of the mouse. On a website that is totally keyboard accessible, tabs should be used to move logically and reliably between sections, menus, form fields, and links, as well as to other content regions.

In addition to aesthetics, page headings are vital for navigation and information organization. The headings should be programmed with true header elements, and the information should be organized and displayed so that it is easy to read and understand.

Links may be challenging for all users, impaired or not, due to factors such as the hue of the connecting light. A solid connection could be one of the most crucial factors for all users. Commonly, readers seek identifiable relationships in reading aids. They do not always appear, however. A successful link requires the following three components:

  • Readability, which includes listing the URL in addition to using standard language.
  • Clarity reveals the connection’s substance.
  • Uniqueness distinguishes the link from other content in the body text by providing a description.

For a consistent user experience, a website’s pages should all have identical or comparable styles, layouts, and navigation buttons (UX). Users can navigate a website with greater confidence, knowing that their experience will be consistent and error-free. It is essential to utilize icons and control components uniformly and to arrange repeat navigation links, including skip links, in the same location on every page.

How Individuals with Disabilities Navigate Online Content

When navigating digital content, individuals with a variety of disabilities confront significant obstacles. For the blind or visually impaired, text-to-speech software may be required. Those who are deaf or hard of hearing may require transcripts or captions to access audio and video content. For those with cognitive difficulties, the topic might need to be clarified. People with physical disabilities may also require content that may be accessed via a variety of input devices, such as switches or eye-gaze sensors. Taking into mind these various requirements, website designers and developers can create digital content that is accessible to a wider audience.

When Developing Content, Consider Those With Visual Impairments

Regarding digital information, it is essential to realize that not everyone interacts with the environment in the same way. Those with poor or no vision, for instance, must interpret information using a number of clues. Before providing kids with digital content, it is necessary to take numerous measures. Every image, for example, requires numerous text captions. Videos must also include audio explanations and closed captions. You can ensure that everyone gets access to your digital data by following these procedures.

Design Your Content With Those Who Are Hearing Impaired in Mind

When generating digital content, it is essential to consider the needs of all possible viewers. This includes those with disabilities who may have difficulty consuming conventional forms of content. Through closed captioning, hearing-impaired and deaf individuals can access digital content.

There are several factors to consider while developing digital content with closed captioning. The captions must be readable and understandable first and foremost. This requires using a large font size and avoiding typefaces with elaborate designs that may be difficult to read. The audio and captions must also be provided on time. The subtitles may be created manually or automatically using software that transcribes the audio recording manually. Finally, it is essential to thoroughly review the captions for errors.

By adhering to these guidelines, it is possible to produce digital content that is accessible to people of all abilities. The usage of closed captions is one strategy for increasing the accessibility of your material; other ways include audio description and sign language interpretation. You may create digital content that is appealing to all audiences if you take their preferences into account.

Summary

It is crucial to ensure that your digital content may be accessed digitally by anyone who visits your website. If you have questions or would like more information about our services, please visit www.qualitylogic.com.

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