Accessibility Guidelines and Specifications

To ensure that the needs of people with disabilities who use Pearson products are effectively represented in the development of guidelines and best practices for accessibility, Pearson engages in technical standards development through global organizations such as the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) , IMS Global , and the Digital Accessible Information SYstem (DAISY) Consortium .

  • The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) develops technical specifications, protocols and guidelines through their Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI). W3C's guidelines define key parts of what makes the World Wide Web work and how to ensure that web content will be accessible to people with disabilities.
  • The IMS (Instructional Management System) Global Learning Consortium is a nonprofit member organization that develops open interoperability and accessibility specifications to support innovative learning technology for instruction and assessment.
  • The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) works together with its partner organizations, the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) , to create technical standards and guidelines that include a diverse range of accessibility consideration for everything from ergonomics, information technology, assistive products, public information symbols and the built environment. It is important to note that the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, version 2.0 was approved as an ISO/IEC International Standard in 2012: ISO/IEC 40500:2012 . It was reviewed and confirmed again in 2019.
  • The DAISY (Digital Accessible Information SYstem) Consortium develops technical standards and best practices for digital publishing and reading platforms to ensure accessibility for people with disabilities in both specialist and mainstream formats, including EPUB 3, the leading mainstream ebook standard.

Pearson Assessments Staff Involvement:

W3C’s Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI):

Members of the Accessibility Team for Assessments are active members of the following WAI efforts:

  • Accessibility Conformance Testing Task Force: Levon Spradlin
  • Accessibility Education and Outreach Working Group: Brent Bakken, Co-Chair
  • Pronunciation Task Force: Steve Noble
  • Publishing Working Group: Teenya Franklin
  • Research Questions Task Force: Steve Noble
  • Silver Task Force: Shari Butler and Jan McSorley

Please see our W3C Involvement page for details about the Web Accessibility Initiative efforts supported by staff from Pearson’s Accessibility Team for Assessments.

W3C Community Groups:

  • MathML Refresh Community Group: Steve Noble
  • Chemistry for the Web and Publishing Community Members: Steve Noble

IMS Global Learning Consortium

Paul Grudnitski, Pearson’s Vice President of Architecture and Innovation serves as one of four Co-Chairs of the QTI 3 Specification. Please see our IMS Involvement page for details about the groups and efforts supported by Pearson Assessment staff.

DAISY Consortium

Steve Noble, Accessible Instructional Designer for Pearson’s Accessibility Team for Assessments, serves on the DAISY – DIAGRAM Standards Group.