«The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.»
— Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web
The internet is a tool that promises access to unlimited resources, in which everybody can fulfill their desire for knowledge. For this reason it is indispensable that the Information Technology Center (CTI) produce resources that are accesible by everybody regardless of their operating system, hardware configuration, particular software and most important physical disabilities. The University of Puert Rico, Mayagüez Campus is commited to develop an Open Campus.
The CTI is available for consulting and training for any individuals requiring help with the design and deployment of accessible resources. Please do not hesitate to call (787) 832-4040 ext 2055 or send email to cti at uprm.edu.
Is imperative that we all work together to achieve these goals, please read the following information to learn more. If you need help contact the CTI.
Our general guidelines for web pages:
- Every page should be tested in different operating systems (Win, Mac, Linux) and devices (Android, iOS).
- Each page must be viewable in all main browsers and devices.
- Plugins for embedded content will be avoided when possible. If used, a page must be viewable without them. When not possible a link to an additional resource/page will be provided or information will be provided on whom or where to communicate to arrange for alternate formats, like printed media, video or others. Proper considerations will be taken depending on the audience or objective of a particular page.
- The use of applets should be limited to particular uses and not as adornments, or as graphical elements. Applets must be tested in different versions of JDK to determine its compatibility and requirements which must be documented on the page. You must make all possible efforts to reduce broadband requirements
- Non text elements like images and other multimedia elements must have a text description by means of the «Alt» or «longdesc». Every hyperlink must have a description using «Title». These allow blind individuals to access your pages by means of screen readers. It is also important to know that most screen readers can not process pages with frames, because they are unable to determine the flow of the pages.
- Pages that use Cascading Style Sheets must be viewable when rendered by a browser without the stylesheets.
- Colors in text and backgrounds must have enough contrast to allow individuals that are Color Blind to view your pages. (Color Blind Examples: Link to http://www.vischeck.com/examples/)
- Every page must follow accessibility guidelines as established by Section 508 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act, the World Wide Web Consortium Web Accessibility Initiative, and Law Number 229 of Puerto Rico.
- When creating PDF documents make sure that they are not created as images. Use the OCR functionality of the scanner and not the traditional image feature when converting printed materials to PDF.
- If after making every possible effort to remove an accessibility issue you were unable to do so, you must provide a link to an alternate resource or provide contact information on how to request the information or resource.
- Never assume that your audience will be using one particular computer, operating system or software version.
- If you have a technology to implement on the internet ask the CTI. We will help you determine the level of compatibility. We can even help you find a portable technology that will fit your needs. There are plenty of open source technologies (FREE) that are remarkably easy to use and portable.
- The key point when designing accesible resources is that you can not deny access to information. The common reasons are the technology and the format we use to present the information. If you know that a particular technology or format may add particular requirements to the access of your information check for alternatives.
- Avoid «Candy». When you get started doing web pages you will find many amusing tricks. Almost 90% of these little wadgets impair the access to the information. Things like java applets with slide shows, pop up menus, scrolling messages, frames, etc.
- Validate your pages using Accessibility Validators like WAVE.
Links to external resources:
Creating Accessible websites
How a blind person will «see» your Web page:
Color Blindness Tests
Creating Accessible Tables