Tag Archives: accessibility

accessibility and usability considerations with CSS

Knowing some examples of how CSS can aid in clickability and readability is highly important as it also takes into consideration accessibility and usability. Hudson et. al. (2005) state that CSS can be used to “…manipulate the presentation of content, without affecting the structure of the content” (p.5).

The article by Hudson et.al (2005) provide the following ideas for clickability and readability with CSS:

  1. Increasing the line height between text can aid in readability
  2. Increasing the margin by “1.5 or 2 full lines of space” will assist readability
  3. Adding hover affects, for example when hovering over a link have the colour change, assist the user to find the links (if it is not already obvious)
  4. Increase the active area on links to increase the target area
  5. Reverse colours, for example “…light coloured text on a dark background”

The above are only couple of examples and they are the ones that I would like to test out on my site for the purpose of usability and readability of the site. For more ideas, examples and the CSS information on how to implement, refer to Hudson et. al. (2005) CSS to aid clickability and readability

Source: Hudson R., Weakley R., and Firminger P. 30 January 2005, ‘Developing sites for users with cognitive disabilities and learning difficulties’ viewed 29 March 2011 at <http://drr.lib.uts.edu.au/link/1604>

accessibility and legislation

My interest in HTML and CSS, while I have an interest in creating web sites, also relates to the necessity for my organisation to meet accessibility legislative requirements that have been set by the Australian government. By December 2012, the organisation I work for must comply with level A accessibility requirements. The webteam have set the challenge to exceed this and meet level AA accessibility requirements.

For more information on conformance, refer to http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20/#conformance-reqs

The primary challenge lay with the lack of conformance of marketing micro-sites that have been set up where accessibility was not on the agenda during development. Something worth knowing when developing a bells and whistles site is that if you do have the need to meet a specific level of conformance, you are able to develop a conforming alternate version.

If you are interested in knowing the specific requirements of an alternate conforming version and why WCAG are providing the option for an alternative, refer to http://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/conformance.html#uc-conforming-alt-versions-head

One thing that is important is the need for the alternate conforming site to ‘provide all of the same information and functionality’ – this can be achieved through clean HTML and CSS. It is therefore, this reason that I am looking forward to learning more about HTML and CSS for a better understanding of how to support conformance of accessibility.

Does your organisation require conformance of a specific level of accessibility? Do you need to meet the legislative requirements? Does your team have similar challenges where there may be a number of designs and functionality that is not consistent across the organisation?