Resources to use and share this Global Accessibility Awareness Day

Tue 8 May 2018

The letters GAAD are surrounded by a cord with keyboard attached to it

We’ve gathered loads of accessibility resources for you to use and share this Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD).

Coming up on Thursday 17 May 2018, the purpose of GAAD is to get everyone talking, thinking and learning about online access and inclusion. To that end, we’ve compiled a range of checklists, blog articles, factsheets and more, from some of Australia’s leading accessibility consultancies.

Whether you’re a marketer, graphic designer, content producer, Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) professional or someone who wants to learn about how to deliver inclusive online experiences, this list is designed to be used and shared in recognition of this important day.

First, a quick introduction to accessibility:

The web offers the possibility of unprecedented access to information and interaction for many people with disability. However, many web products are developed with accessibility barriers that make them difficult or impossible for some people to use. Accessibility means that websites, applications, tools, and technologies are designed and developed so that people with disability can use them. More specifically, so they can perceive, understand, navigate, interact with and contribute to them. In fact, access to ICT, including the web, is defined as a basic human right in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD). The global authority on web accessibility is the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Accessibility Initiative, which provides a comprehensive introduction to web accessibility.

Everyone is different video

  • Type of resource: Video
  • Title: Everyone is Different
  • Provider: A11y Bytes
  • Audience: General

Summary: This four-minute video is about embracing differences and creating delightful digital experiences for everyone. It encourages the audience to think about the different ways people might interact with a digital creation and how to make a digital experience as easy as possible for every user, including people with disability.

Watch the video: Everyone is Different.

Digital accessibility e-book

  • Type of resource: E-Book
  • Title: The All-In-One Digital Accessibility E-Book
  • Provider: Siteimprove
  • Audience: General

Summary: A comprehensive guide to digital accessibility, this e-book comprises tips and expert insights on how to create an inclusive website. It covers the basics of web accessibility, easy ways to improve your website’s accessibility, how to create accessible PDFs, how to be more accessible on social media, and more.

Read: The All-In-One Digital Accessibility E-Book.

Beginners’ guide to accessible content

  • Type of resource: Factsheet
  • Title: A beginner’s guide to accessible content
  • Provider: Australian Network on Disability (AND)
  • Audience: General

Summary: If you communicate with people, you need to know about web accessibility. It’ll help you write more compelling emails, create easier-to-read documents and improve your search rankings online. This article outlines some simple, practical tips you can apply day to day to make your content more inclusive.

Read the beginner’s guide to accessible content.

Free accessibility events for GAAD

  • Type of resource: Events (free to attend)
  • Title: A11 Bytes
  • Provider: A11y Bytes
  • Audience: Professionals interested in accessibility and inclusive design.

Summary: A11y Bytes is a dynamic, fast-paced evening of lightning talks about digital accessibility and the needs and preferences of users with disability. An opportunity to think, talk and learn about digital accessibility and inclusion, the events will run in Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane, Canberra and Sydney on 17 May.

Find out more about an A11y Bytes event near you.

Document accessibility checklists

  • Types of resources: Checklists and blog article
  • Titles:
    • Quick Reference Guide for Graphic Designers
    • Quick Reference Guide for Copywriters
    • How do I know if my document is tagged correctly
  • Provider: TaggedPDF
  • Audience: Graphic designers, copywriters and anyone who produces documents

Summary: Before a PDF reaches the tagging process, there are things you can do to ensure its content is accessible. Use these checklists to ensure you’re writing and designing for accessibility.

Read the checklist for graphic designers or read the checklist for copywriters.

It can be difficult for those who don’t spend a lot of time with accessibility to know whether something is actually accessible. Simply having tags in a PDF document does not mean that it has been tagged correctly. This article outlines some things to keep in mind when looking at your tagged document.

Read: How do I know if my document is tagged correctly?

The Ultimate Captioning Toolkit

  • Type of resource: Toolkit
  • Title: The Ultimate Captioning Toolkit
  • Provider: Ai-Media
  • Audience: Anyone involved in video production or distribution

Summary: This easy-to-follow captioning guide from Ai-Media is filled with techniques perfected over 12 years. You can create professional quality captions for free to increase reach, drive engagement and grow your sales. The Toolkit features the exact tips and techniques the team at Ai-Media use every day to create thousands of hours of captions.

Download The Ultimate Captioning Toolkit (note: you’ll need to complete a quick online form to access your free download).

WCAG 2.1 guide for ICT professionals

  • Type of resource: Blog article
  • Title: WCAG 2.1 Candidate Recommendation – what it means for Level AA compliance
  • Provider: Dr Scott Hollier
  • Audience: ICT professionals

Summary: After almost a decade, the global standard for web accessibility is set to change. The current standard – called the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) – will change from version 2.0 to version 2.1. Still technically in draft format as a ‘Candidate Recommendation’, WCAG 2.1 is likely to become an official ‘W3C Recommendation’ in mid-2018. In this article, Dr Hollier outlines any additional work required by ICT professionals to meet WCAG 2.1 Level AA compliance.

Read: WCAG 2.1 Candidate Recommendation – what it means for Level AA compliance.

Note: For a brief, non-technical summation of the impending change, read our recent news article: Global web accessibility standards set to change.

Accessibility factsheets

  • Type of resource: Factsheets
  • Title: Accessibility Factsheets
  • Provider: AccessibilityOz
  • Audience: Content managers or developers

Summary: These factsheets provide detailed information on accessibility issues, impact on the end user together with a detailed checklist or test plan that can be used by content managers or developers to review website content and functionality and guidance on the use of automated testing tools. Categories include: images, PDF, video, interactive maps, HTML 5, content, JavaScript, tables, coding, keyboard, source order and forms.

Read or download the accessibility factsheets.

Procurement standard for ICT accessibility

  • Type of resource: Blog article
  • Title: EN 301 549: What it means for Australia
  • Provider: Intopia
  • Audience: ICT professionals

Summary: Formally adopted as a part of the federal government’s procurement policies for Information and Communication Technologies, EN 301 549 is a procurement standard for ICT accessibility. This article delves deeper into this procurement standard, how it will help accessibility, and why every organisation should include it in their technology procurement policies.

Read about the ICT accessibility procurement standard.

A metaphor for accessibility

  • Type of resource: Blog article
  • Title: The Way of the Accessible Fist
  • Provider: Vision Australia | Digital Access
  • Audience: Digital designers, developers and project teams

Summary: Solid, accessible foundations result in solid, accessible experiences. In this article, a martial arts metaphor is used to explain why accessibility should be part of the development process, for the benefit of designers, developers and customers.

Learn about The Way of the Accessible Fist.

Examples of beautiful and accessible websites

  • Type of resource: Blog article
  • Title: Five beautiful and accessible websites for design inspiration
  • Provider: Internetrix
  • Audience: Website designers and developers, and marketers

Summary: This article debunks the myth that accessible websites are visually boring and ugly by giving examples of beautiful, interactive and engaging websites that are also accessible.

Read: Five beautiful and accessible websites for design inspiration.

Inclusive Design explained

  • Type of resource: Blog article (PDF)
  • Title: So what is Inclusive Design?
  • Provider: Centre for Inclusive Design
  • Audience: Marketing and customer experience teams

Summary: In this article, Dr Manisha Amin, CEO of the Centre for Inclusive Design, explains the concept of Inclusive Design and how it can improve customer experiences, and describes her vision for a world in which everyone can participate.

Read the article: So what is Inclusive Design? (PDF, 854KB)

Get involved

Visit the Global Accessibility Awareness Day website for more information about how this campaign got started and activities taking place worldwide to recognise the day. Relevant social media hashtags include: #gaad, #accessibility, #a11y (shorthand jargon for accessibility).  

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