Public Education Events
Anyone that has the ability to publish content in Gato is considered a website editor. Editors are required to attend Gato training to learn how to use system tools to create web content following current web accessibility best practices. For more information about the training, visit the Gato I: Fundamentals Training signup page.
Website Accessibility Rodeo
Instructional Technologies Support (ITS) has also partnered with the Vice President for Information Technology office and Office of Disability Services to host the "Website Accessibility Rodeo." This hands-on training consists of best practice coaching and competitive editing. Participants tackle a wide range of accessibility issues improving high profile or impact web pages.
Self-paced support resources are also available within this site and Office of Disabilities website to help editors design and create accessible web content. Editors are encouraged to leverage a combination of these tools to make informed decisions that adhere to current accessibility standards.
Standards and guidelines
One key in understanding accessibility tools is to understand the standards used to develop the tool. There are currently two standards and guidelines most commonly used - the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0) and Section 508 of the United States Rehabilitation Act.
|WCAG 2.0||WCAG 2.0 consists of three priority levels that act as an industry standard. The first level, Level A, covers items on web pages that must be made accessible in order for individuals with disabilities to access the content at all. The second level, Level AA, includes items on web pages that should be made accessible to allow a wider group of users to access the content. Level AAA describes items on web pages that can be made accessible to allow the widest amount of individuals with disabilities to use the site. For more information about WCAG 2.0 visit the W3C web site.|
|Section 508||Section 508 of the United States Rehabilitation Act outlines the requirements for making federally-funded web sites accessible to individuals with disabilities. These standards detail how different components of web sites need to be designed to make the web content accessible. Under Section 508, the U.S. federal government has 16 standards that are used to define web accessibility. For more information about Section 508 visit the Section 508 checklist.|
WebAIM – Web Accessibility In Mind Website
- The WebAIM website offers extensive self-paced learning resources aimed at educating editors about accessibility, including current techniques and issues.
Office of Disability Services at Texas State
- The Office of Disability Services has a number of helpful resources online for editors. The resource section on assistive technologies is an especially valuable guide to the various software, resources, and instructions for creating accessible documents.
University Marketing Department at Texas State
- The Texas State University Marketing department manages a resource section within their website dedicated to Web Best Practices, including accessibility relative to design.
- An up-to-date list of web accessibility tools can also be found on the W3C site at https://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/tools/.
The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 Checklist serves as an appendix to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 [WCAG20]. It lists all of the success criteria from WCAG 2.0 in a checkable list.
Tip: Editors should keep a completed copy of the checklist for each page/site reviewed until a new change is made, at which point the new documentation supersedes.
Automated Accessibility Tools
|WAVE Web Accessibility||The WAVE Web Accessibility tool checks page accessibility and displays the page in one side of the screen with tags on the opposite side to visually show editors potential errors/issues on the page.|
|W3C Markup Validator||The W3C Markup Validation Service is an automated validator created by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) that allows Internet users to check HTML and XHTML documents for well-formed markup. Markup validation is an important step towards ensuring the technical quality of web pages. However, it is not a complete measure of web standards conformance. Though W3C validation is important for browser compatibility and site usability, it has not been confirmed what effect it has on search engine optimization.|
|WebAIM: Color Contrast Checker||The WebAIM Color Contrast Checker allows you to test the color contrast between foreground and background colors to ensure you have a strong enough contrast for individuals with visual disabilities, such as color blindness and low vision.|
|SortSite||The Information Technology division uses an advanced accessibility checker to determine whether Gato websites meet current accessibility standards.|
No automated evaluation tool has the ability to tell you with 100% accuracy whether your website is accessible, or even compliant. Human testing is always necessary, because accessibility is about the human experience.
Gato System Constraints
Gato has a wide range of content types that can be used to create Web content. The systems is designed to help editors adhere to accessibility standards. However, there are a few content types in the system that can result in unplanned accessibility issues. These issues are generally related to tables, document sharing, images, video, and link sharing (e.g. - external websites, internal web pages).
Editors should pay special attention to the accessibility of their content when choosing to work with the following content types:
- Embed Video
- Image and Text
- Raw HTML
- Rich Text Editor
Anytime editors create new content in one of these Gato content types, they should review their work prior to publishing the changes. For the best user experience, changes should be viewed on both PC and Mac computers using the most common Internet browsers.
- Google Chrome (PC, Mac)
- Internet Explorer (PC)
- Mozilla Firefox (PC, Mac)
- Safari (Mac)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Accessibility rules and guidelines are evolving. Visit the Accessibility FAQ for the most relevant questions facing Texas State University.