Designing Accessible Websites, Applications and Content

Developing accessible web sites improves overall usability for everyone, supports search engine optimization (SEO), and provides fair and equitable access for people with diverse abilities. As a developer of web sites, apps, or digital content, adding accessibility skill sets to your toolbelt will equip you to solve complex problems through innovation that average developers cannot solve. If you are able to approach a development task with a broader understanding of your user base and with the technical chops to design for diverse populations, you are more likely to develop a superior, robust solution. The following resources are valuable tools for developing strong accessibility development and content design skills.

Web Development Resources

  • Web Accessibility Tutorials - The W3C Web Accessibility Initiative’s collection of tutorials on creating accessible web content, including page structure, menus, images, tables, forms and carousels.
  • Developing for Web Accessibility - A W3C Web Accessibility Initiative resource that "introduces some basic considerations to help you get started developing web content that is more accessible to people with disabilities.”
  • Designing for Web Accessibility - Tips from the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative on making accessible user interfaces and visual designs.
  • Constructing a POUR Website - An article by WebAim that discusses motivations for creating accessible web content, understanding the user’s perspectives and needs, how to move beyond technical accessibility, and focusing on the four main guiding principles of accessibility in WCAG 2.0: Perceivable, Operable, Understandable and Robust (POUR).

Accessible Design Across Platforms

  • Accessibility - Windows Dev Center - Includes resources for developers on designing inclusive products, testing for accessibility, exposing information to assistive technologies and many other accessibility best practices for developers.
  • Android Developer Accessibility - Resources that provide information on accessibility best practices for design and user interaction and how to test Android apps for accessibility.
  • Apple Developer Accessibility - Resources for building accessible iOS, macOS, and watchOS applications.

Creating Accessible Content

  • Writing for Web Accessibility – W3C Web Accessibility Initiative providing basic considerations for writing accessible web content that includes page titles, use of headings for semantic structure, making link text meaningful, alternative text for images, providing clear instructions and keeping content clear and concise.
  • Making Audio & Video Media Accessible – W3C Web Accessibility Initiative providing information on understanding user needs, how to make audio and video accessible, examples of accessible videos and benefits of accessible media to organizations and individuals.
  • CADET (Caption and Description Editing Tool) - A free caption-authoring software that enables anyone to produce high-quality caption files that are compatible with any media player that supports the display of captions.