Websites built with accessibility in mind are flexible in meeting different user needs, preferences and situations. Though these methods can increase usability for everyone who uses the Web they are often legally required to be implemented in a specific effort to prevent discrimination against people with disabilities.
- 1 Starting points
- 2 Moodle Accessibility Collaboration Group
- 3 Moodle-related accessibility coding guidelines
- 4 Web standards, guidelines and legislation
- 5 Tools
- 6 Resources
- 7 See also
These are some readable introductions to accessibility that cover; what accessibility is, why it is important, as well as practical advice.
- Web Accessibility Initiative's Introduction to Web Accessibility
- Mark Pilgrim's Dive into Accessibility (Archived pdf)
- Joe Clark's Building Accessible Websites book
Moodle Accessibility Collaboration Group
To improve the accessibility/usability of this learning management system, we have established this collaboration group to work together with Moodle developers, administrators, IT professionals, and other interested entities and individuals. We welcome anyone who is interested in improving the accessibility of Moodle to join this group. You don’t need to be a technical guru or accessibility expert to join; however, it is expected that you are familiar with the basics of accessibility and are willing to dedicate a few hours each month to this collaboration effort.
Visit http://collaborate.athenpro.org/group/moodle to join the email list.
We meet in regional groups once a month to discuss accessibility priorities for each region. Regions meet at the following times:
- North America: We meet on the 1st Monday of each month at 10am USA Pacific Daylight Saving Time/5pm UTC. (Time zone converter: http://www.worldtimebuddy.com/)
- Europe: Looking for leadership and members
- Asia Pacific: Looking for leadership and members
- Latin America: Looking for leadership and members
To review past regional meetings or to see up coming meetings visit http://collaborate.athenpro.org/group/moodle/teleconferences/
- Use CSS, but still use headings, strong and emphasis
- It is generally a good idea to separate a document's content HTML from how it is presented using CSS. There are some tags that affect a document's presentation but also contribute to the structure and meaning of the content. These tags should remain in HTML. This includes heading tags
<h1>, <h2>, <h3>..., which are used to form the document's hierarchical structure, and
<em>tags, which are used to add meaning to sections of text.
- Avoid using background images for important information
- Users of non-visual browsers cannot see images. They can read the
alttags of normal images, but background images are not presented like normal images.
altattribute is required (even if empty) on all images.
- If a link is wrapping an
<img>does not need a
titleattribute if the link has one.
altfor an image and the
titlefor its surrounding link should usually differ. An image
altattribute provides a text equivalent to an image, whereas a
titleattribute adds supplementary information about the purpose or action associated with an image link. Simply repeating the same text in
titleattributes adds little and can be annoying for screen reader users.
- Links and buttons should be selectable and easily click-able
- An image used as an icon for a user to click should be large enough so that the user can click on it easily.
- Users should be able to navigate to all links and buttons using the keyboard.
- Generally we should avoid having two buttons/links that achieve the same action in the same area. This can be annoying and confusing for users of screen readers.
- Support dynamic interaction with ARIA attributes
- Use labels with inputs
- Context can easily be lost without a visual presentation. Labels are needed on all input input elements (except button) to describe their purpose in a form. Labels should be unique on a page. Repeated elements should have a unique label that identifies the element within its context.
- Use appropriate page titles
- A page title is a starting point for a screen reader. Page titles should be unique and should make sense for the page. Avoid generic page titles.
- All pages should be navigable using just a keyboard
- It should be possible navigate to all points on a page just using a keyboard. Important events triggered by a mouse event should be able to be triggered when the item receives focus through keyboard navigation.
- Avoid using colour alone to express meaning
- Colour-blind users need additional information to gain meaning if colour is used as the emphasising feature. Also keep in mind that colours can have differing significance in different cultures, so colours should be configurable either through settings or language files.
- Use sufficient color contrast when adding color to text. See Tracker ticket MDL 522391
- Role for button-type links
Web standards, guidelines and legislation
- Web Accessibility Initiative
- Equality Act 2010, in particular:
- See also the Equality Act 2010 Statutory Code of Practice (PDF) for Services, public functions and associations.
- Public sector equality duty created by the Equality Act 2010.
- SENDA - Special Educational Needs and Disability Act/Bill
- Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (now merged ino the Equality Act 2010).
- BS 8878:2010 – 16 Steps for an accessible web product
- Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the accessibility of public sector bodies' websites.
- Firefox Accessibility Extension by the Illinois Center for Information Technology and Web Accessibility (iCITA)
- Web developer extension for Firefox
- Blank Your Monitor and Easy Reading Extension for Firefox
- plugin for Firebug
- contrast plugin for Firefox
Accessibility validation tools
- Chrome Accessibility Developer Tooks
- W3C validation (for HTML in Moodle, CSS and RSS)
- Web accessibility evaluation tool
- Cynthia Says accessibility checker
Since 2.7, Moodle officially supports the following screen reader/browser configurations (MDL-44002):
|Browser||Screen reader||Minimum version||Recommended version|
|Microsoft Internet Explorer||Jaws||15||Latest|
Other tools and resources:
- Fangs – the screen reader emulator for Firefox
- WebAIM Screen reader survey (Predominance of tools, browsers, OSs used by accessibility users)
- ChromeVox - Available in several languages for Linux, Windows and Mac OS, only on Chrome browser. (Android mobile users can use TalkBack)
See also this long list of accessibility tools.
- Web Standards.org's Accessibility Task Force Manifesto
- Accessibility articles from A List Apart
- Mark Pilgrim's Won’t somebody please think of the gerbils?
- Dive Into Accessibility by Mark Pilgrim
- Building Accessible Websites by Joe Clark (online version)
- Wikipedia article on Web Accessibility
- Validity and Accessibility
- Videos showing as student accessing another Learning Management System via Screen Reader software
- Accessibility statement - in current Moodle versions
- Semantic HTML
- Moodle Accessibility Specification
- See Usability FAQ for the related concept of usability.
- http://moodle.org/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=127807#p559951 (Old, 2009, might not be relevant any more)
- The Introduction to Moodle Programming provides some extensive information and discussion on accessibility.
- EASY: Interface Between The Virtual Environment Moodle Learning and People with Visual Impairments
- BBC blog post on how their Web 2.0 homepage was made accessible
- BBC Accessibility Help
- Accessibility Compliance in Moodle 1.8
- Compliance with Italian Legislation on Accessibility
- Open accessibility issues on the Tracker
- this forum thread - Another way to look at it is that the Open University, UK, has more disabled students than all other UK universities combined, and we use a lot of Moodle quizzes, and only occasionally do we hear that a student had a problem with the mechanics of answering the quiz.