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Re: Web Accessibility Evaluation and Testing

From: Shadi Abou-Zahra <shadi@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 13 Jul 2011 20:19:30 +0200
Message-ID: <4E1DE1B2.8000603@w3.org>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Dear Ian,

WAI provides guidance on involving users:

# Involving Users in Web Projects for Better, Easier Accessibility
  - <http://www.w3.org/WAI/users/involving>

# Involving Users in Evaluating Web Accessibility
  - <http://www.w3.org/WAI/eval/users>


These and other WAI resources will certainly be considered during the 
development of the evaluation methodology.

Best,
   Shadi


On 13.7.2011 15:19, Ian Sharpe wrote:
> Hi Shawn
>
> Apologies if this is covered in the more detailed description of the project
> you gave but will this  task force also consider the usability of a site or
> page as well  as conformance to WCAG2.0?
>
> I am continually frustrated by sites that provide an accessibility statement
> that explains how the site was designed with accessibility in mind and
> conforms to whatever standard and has been validated using some
> accessibility validator, and yet is still very difficult to use.
>
> While I totally support the work that is being done here and in other places
> to establish guidelines and standards to improve accessibility, the need for
> doing so, how this has helped to raise awareness of the issues experienced
> by users of the web and the impact this has had on the accessibility of the
> web in recent years, I feel that some organisations are now using
> conformance to the various standards to satisfy any obligations under
> anti-discrimination legislation, rather than to necessarily improve
> accessibility.
>
> I totally accept that if a site conforms to WCAG1.0 or now WCAG2.0, it is
> far more likely to be accessible than if it doesn't and would always
> recommend that site designers use such standards when developing or
> modifying sites. But conformance alone is not enough to guarantee usability.
>
> Whether a site is usable depends on what the site is supposed to do, as well
> as the accessibility of the content, which obviously makes it difficult to
> provide any specific techniques or guidelines on how to ensure usability.
> However, maybe any guidelines or information relating to validation in
> particular could be prefaced with some cover all that states that it is not
> enough to conform to the guidelines to ensure a site is accessible. You
> would hope that issues relating to usability would be picked up during
> testing but this would appear not to be the case and so maybe there is also
> an argument to highlight the importants of testing more than maybe it is
> already?
>
> I am concious that this could just be seen as yet another thing for
> designers to consider at a time when we are just starting to see a movement
> towards greater support and adoption of the guidelines.
>
> I just feel that it might be helpful if maybe more emphasis was placed on
> making sites useable and using the various standards and guidelines to this
> end, rather than focussing primarily on conformance.
>
> Cheers
> ian
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] On Behalf
> Of Shawn Henry
> Sent: 13 July 2011 10:02
> To: WAI Interest Group
> Subject: Web Accessibility Evaluation and Testing
>
>    Dear WAI Interest Group Participants,
>
> WAI is starting a WCAG 2.0 Evaluation Methodology Task Force to develop more
> comprehensive guidance on evaluating web accessibility.
>
> The Evaluation Task Force will develop an internationally harmonized
> methodology for evaluating websites' conformance to WCAG 2.0. The
> methodology will provide provides a step-by-step procedure for evaluating
> websites, including guidance on sampling individual web pages, evaluating
> them according to WCAG 2.0, and aggregating the results into a conformance
> statement. To learn more about the scope of work and anticipated timeline,
> see the WCAG 2.0 Evaluation Methodology Task Force (Eval TF) Work Statement
> at:
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/2011/eval/eval-tf
>
> The methodology is part of a wider W3C/WAI effort on web accessibility
> evaluation and testing, which includes the development of test suites for
> all WAI guidelines and specifications. For more information, see W3C/WAI Web
> Accessibility Evaluation and Testing Activities at:
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/ER/2011/eval/
>
> If you would like to get announcements when drafts of the methodology are
> available, you can subscribe to WAI's RSS feed, tweets, or other venues
> listed at:
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/about/announcements
>
> If you might be interested in actively participating in this work, please
> read Participating in WAI at:
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/participation
> and then contact Shadi Abou-Zahra, see http://www.w3.org/People/shadi/
>
> Please let us know if you have any questions.
>
> Feel free to circulate this message to other lists; please avoid
> cross-postings where possible.
>
> Regards,
> ~Shawn Lawton Henry
> &  Shadi Abou-Zahra
>
>
>
> -----
> Shawn Lawton Henry
> W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI)
> e-mail: shawn@w3.org
> phone: +1.617.395.7664
> about: http://www.w3.org/People/Shawn/
>
>
>

-- 
Shadi Abou-Zahra - http://www.w3.org/People/shadi/
Activity Lead, W3C/WAI International Program Office
Evaluation and Repair Tools Working Group (ERT WG)
Research and Development Working Group (RDWG)
Received on Wednesday, 13 July 2011 18:20:01 GMT

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