Design For Accessibilty- It’s The Law

Excellent Overview of Section 508: Here  (sample below)

Section 508 has three main requirements to meet:

  1. Technical – these requirements make sure the coding of a website, software, operating systems, etc. is compatible with assistive technologies.
  2. Functional – these requirements ensure that in addition to the technical coding, the entire system is usable by someone with a disability.
  3. Support – these requirements make sure that support documents and alternative information is also accessible by people with disabilities.

If a project doesn’t meet all three of these requirements, then it is not legally compliant.

The official Section 508 compliance guidelines is available for you to reference if needed. In addition, the following are some excellent resources for quickly learning how to make your document 508 Compliant, including sites that test your work to make sure your project meets requirements:

  • United States Access Board – The Section 508 Standards of this site provides an excellent detailed explanation of the three different requirements we discussed above. The Guide to Section 508 Standards on this site allows you to choose the specific type of technology you are designing and gives detailed explanations and examples of the standards.
  • – This site provides an excellent, free course for learning what it means to make website designs 508 compliant. Lots of excellent real life examples are included and explanations are easy to understand.
  • – This site is an excellent source for low cost but thorough training for web accessibility and Section 508. However, they also offer a free tutorial on Section 508 for those who want to learn on their own.
  • SSB Bart Group – Another option for excellent training and classes on accessibility is available through this group, but you can also test your site for accessibility, including if it meets Section 508 standards, for free. They also provide a good explanation of Section 508.
  • HowTo.Gov – For scores of excellent information, visit the HowTo.Gov website, which includes basic overviews as well as tutorials and resources on making sure everything from a website to multimedia is 508 Compliant. You may also want to check out this video on No Fail Accessibility Testing.
  • WebAIM – This site provides a good 508 compliant checklist for HTML, Scripts, Plug-ins, Java, and more. The checklist includes links to further explanation of certain standards.
  • – For a basic overview of accessibility and 508 compliance in web design, Viget offers an easy to understand article on the subject. This is an excellent place to start, since it clears up common misconceptions.
  • U.S. HHS – The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services gives an excellent overview of Section 508 as well as step-by-step tutorials and testing.

Go read the whole thing: Here


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