The resources below accompany the talk on accessible website design, from both user and developer perspectives, given by Zuzana Kunckova and Elisabeth Klaar at the March 2018 meeting of Cambridge WordPress Meetup.
Reasons for making your site accessible to everyone
Disability affects 1 in 5 of the UK population – that’s 12.9 million people who will find it easier to be your customers or site user if your site is accessible to them. An infographic from A Bright Clear Web gives further facts and figures to motivate you to make your site accessible. Fully referenced at the bottom of the page.
Also worth reading is Zuzana Kunckova’s medium article ‘Is your website accessible? If not you may be losing money!’
You can also learn more about the Social Model of Disability on Wikipedia.
The W3C Web Accessibility Initiative’s guide to Accessible Design Principles will get you up to speed on the key principles (make your site Perceivable, Operable, Understandable and Robust) of accessible design.
Accessibility tips for beginners/users/non-coders
WPBeginner has a useful introductory article giving ‘non-coder’ tips for improving accessibility
The WP Accessiblity Plug-in developed by Joe Dolson is also an excellent way to configure your site if you are concerned it’s not accessible but you don’t want to change themes.
Adding images, text and video
A Bright Clear Web has an excellent ‘how to’ blog piece on adding alt text to images in the right way.
Foxland’s article on accessible content covers all bases from a user perspective – headings, video, images and more.
The UK Government has produced some fantastic posters about accessibility and website design, indicating the various ways the users with different impairments can benefit from tweaks in use of colour, in particular.
There are particular considerations for sharing information with people who have a learning difficulty, and the technique of Easy Read has been developed to help with this.
Accessibility for developers
The W3C guidelines for accessibility are a key resource
The WordPress Accessibility Handbook
There are also many articles on WebAIM going into detail about many aspects of accessibility, including intros/guidelines for key areas.
WAI-ARIA guidelines: https://www.w3.org/TR/wai-aria-1.1/
Tools for assessing accessibility
HTML validator – https://validator.w3.org/ Chrome/Firefox Developer tools aXe Firefox and Chrome browsers extention WAVE – accessibility checker https://wave.webaim.org/ (also a chrome extension) Readibility checker – https://www.webpagefx.com/tools/read-able/ Contrast ration checker – http://leaverou.github.io/contrast-ratio/ Accessibility checklist – https://github.com/Heydon/inclusive-design-checklist
Courses, for if you want to take it further
Udacity course on Accessible website design (general)
WordPress: Accessibility on Lynda (WordPress specific)
People/groups to follow on twitter or on their blogs
The following people tweet or blog regularly about issues concerning accessibility and WordPress:
Joe Dolson @joedolson
Claire Brotherton @abrightclearweb
Graham Armfield @coolfields
Adrian Roselli @aardrian
Sami Keijonen @samikeijonen
Rian Rietveld @rianrietveld
And don’t forget to check out the useful and interesting videos on WordPress.tv, in particular those exploring issues to do with accessibility. Typcially, these are videos of talks given at WordCamps around the world and are a useful resource for learning about many aspects of WordPress.