NC State University Office of Information Technology

Testing for
Accessibility
Before You Hit

Publish

Brian DeConinck

OIT Design & Web Services

NC State University

NC State University Office of Information Technology
NC State University
WordPress
NC State University Office of Information Technology

The WordPress community likes to talk about
democratizing publishing...

NC State University Office of Information Technology

On the OIT website, we have
~300 OIT staff
who can edit and update content.

NC State University Office of Information Technology

More generally at NC State,
anyone could be building a website!

  • Admin assistants updating departmental websites
     
  • Faculty updating course websites
     
  • Grad students updating research group websites
     
  • Undergrads updating student group websites
NC State University Office of Information Technology

All Students + All Faculty + All Staff
means we have

52,000+ potential
content creators

and that's really cool!

NC State University Office of Information Technology

This is AWESOME 
because...

 

  • We have lots of websites
     
  • Minimal training required for new users
     
  • Anyone can create new web pages!
NC State University Office of Information Technology

This is TERRIBLE 
because...

 

  • We have lots of websites
     
  • Minimal training required for new users
     
  • Anyone can create new web pages!
NC State University Office of Information Technology

As a developer, I can do a lot to
make a theme accessible...

NC State University Office of Information Technology

But I don't have any control over
what our users put in the page!

NC State University Office of Information Technology

So I can't prevent things like...

Images with no alt text

NC State University Office of Information Technology

So I can't prevent things like...

Insufficient
color contrast

NC State University Office of Information Technology

So I can't prevent things like...

Misused
heading tags

NC State University Office of Information Technology

How do you get
300 OIT
content creators

to not make
inaccessible content?

NC State University Office of Information Technology

How do you get
52,000+ potential
content creators

to not make
inaccessible content?

NC State University Office of Information Technology

WordPress
helps us solve this problem!

 

  • Literally - I built a WordPress plugin using useful WordPress functions
     
  • Figuratively - The "democratizing publishing" ethos is going to help us here!
NC State University Office of Information Technology

Let's make
accessibility testing
part of the
content creation process

NC State University Office of Information Technology

NC State
Accessibility Helper

  • Homegrown WordPress plugin
  • Uses aXe accessibility testing engine by Deque Systems
  • Additional custom tests by us

View (and steal!) my code at:
go.ncsu.edu/a11y-helper-github

NC State University Office of Information Technology
NC State University Office of Information Technology

Generates an
annotated preview highlighting detected accessibility issues

NC State University Office of Information Technology

Modal dialog gives a
brief description
of the detected issue, with links to a learning resource
and the Help Desk

NC State University Office of Information Technology

Custom tests give reminders to keep thinking about accessibility

NC State University Office of Information Technology

What this isn't

What this is

  • Rigorous compliance testing
  • A substitute for accessibility training
  • A fool-proof solution for everything!
  • A way to engage your content creators in the accessibility testing process
NC State University Office of Information Technology

Brian DeConinck

OIT Design & Web Services
NC State University

Twitter: @BrianDeConinck

Email: bpdeconi@ncsu.edu

Testing for Accessibility Before You Hit Publish (UNC CAUSE 2017)

By Brian DeConinck

Testing for Accessibility Before You Hit Publish (UNC CAUSE 2017)

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