Learn WCAG 2.0 – POUR
If you follow these guidelines, your content will be more inclusive.
Get the DUH Checklist (PDF, 104Kb).
- Provide text alternatives for non-text content.
- Provide captions and other alternatives for multimedia.
- Create content that can be presented in different ways,
- including by assistive technologies, without losing meaning.
- Make it easier for users to see and hear content.
- Make all functionality available from a keyboard.
- Give users enough time to read and use content.
- Do not use content that causes seizures.
- Help users navigate and find content.
- Make text readable and understandable.
- Make content appear and operate in predictable ways.
- Help users avoid and correct mistakes.
- Maximize compatibility with current and future user tools.
- Use the right DOCTYPE!
- Web pages validate
- No frames
- Minimal layout tables
Cascading Style Sheets
- No manual font or paragraph formatting
- Full use of inheritance
Relative Text Size
- No points or pixels
- Assign font size to <body>, override as necessary (typically only headings and special styles)
- “Skip to Main Content” link
- Use OnFocus, OnBlur, etc.
- “Mouseover” menus are almost never accessible
- Use alt text as necessary
- Learn the rules
Podcasts / Videos
- Captions, transcripts, audio descriptions
- Sign language videos are a special case
Clear, Consistent Design
- Don’t change the design for every page
- Consistency matters
- Use table-appropriate tags: <caption>, <summary>, <th>
- Use th and scope or id:
- <th scope=”row”>Row Header</th>
- <td>data cell</td>
- <th id=”r2″>Row Header</th>
- <td headers=”r2″>data cell</td>
- Descriptive link text
- Use primary and secondary indicators
- Contrast ratio of at least 4.5:1 for AA, at least 7:1 for AAA
Associative Form Information
- Use Label element for form prompts:
- <label for=”fname”>First Name:</label>
- <input type=”text” ID=”fname” name=”fname”>
General Writing Rules
You might already follow most of these. Did you know that you were also making your documents more inclusive?
Headings / Structure
- Use consecutively numbered headings.
Active Voice, Present Tense, Second Person
- Avoid passive voice; people need to know where the action is
- Avoid third person
- “Consumable” chunks
- Short sentences (fewer than 20 words)
- Short paragraphs (one to three sentences)
- Must know your audience!
“Interchangeables” (confusing words)
- Avoid (always)
- Numbered lists for tasks
- Bulleted lists for non-consecutive items
Acronyms / Abbreviations
- Spell out first use
- Don’t “write to impress”; write to be easily understood
Cultural and Global References
No one has an entire audience of fluent English readers from the United States. Following these guidelines means that more people are able to easily understand the content, and no one is insulted or left out.
- Format appropriately for the parent country
- Be sure to allow for both postal and ZIP codes
- Some countries use 5-digit postal codes
- Identify the country along with the symbol
- Don’t just use the names of seasons (spring, summer, fall or autumn, winter); all countries have seasons, just not at the same time
- If using the 12-hour clock, identify “am” or “pm”
- Use ISO or modified ISO to prevent confusion
- Don’t use only numeric dates
- Format correctly; some countries use spaces, not dashes
- Some people use periods as delineators; be consistent
- Try to avoid whenever possible
- Try to avoid whenever possible
D.U.H.: Diverse, Understandable, Human – A Checklist by JTF Associates, Inc. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at jtfassociates.com.