Why make your website or e-learning programmes accessible to everyone? Because it’s fair? Because it’s the law? Because it makes business sense? the answer is all three – it’s fair, it’s the law and it makes business sense.
By everyone this means people with sight problems, hearing, mobility and cognitive impairments, as well as those using older browsers and slow, dial-up connections, or newer technologies such as mobiles and PDAs.
More and more sites I’ve looked at recently now meet W3C A standards for accessibility which can be found here but to varying degrees. Some sites only let you, for example, increase font size where as others have a well thought out approach.
One webite that does it really it well (and sorry if you’re not a Harry Potter fan!!) is www.jkrowling.co.uk. According to the RNIB’s website this is a good example of a site that has been made as accessible as possible. If you want to know how they’ve done this or want to check out the standards they’ve used please read this article.
If you come across sites that do not yet meet the standards then check out the tools within Internet Explorer which allow you to override font, style and colour settings set by a website. Go to Tools/Internet Options/Accessibility to check them out.
It seems there is still a challenge to us all to be more Accessibilty Aware in whatever we are building or designing.