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Re: Proposal for moving COGA SC forward

From: Michael Cooper <cooper@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 25 May 2017 13:57:56 -0400
To: Michael Pluke <Mike.Pluke@castle-consult.com>, Andrew Kirkpatrick <akirkpat@adobe.com>, Gregg C Vanderheiden <greggvan@umd.edu>
Cc: "w3c-waI-gl@w3. org" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <229f103f-f0de-dc6f-6287-de8c16f917c1@w3.org>
I've been thinking of the "pillars" as success criteria. The reason for 
this is I think the supplemental guidance document has to supplement 
something, so we need SC in WCAG 2.1 in order to have a hook to build on 
in the supplement.

If we look at things that might be viewed as "pillars of cognitive 
accessibility", they do indeed look more like guidelines than SC. For 
instance, one starting proposal is the eight sections in 
But the problem with guidelines is, we have to have SC under them. So 
introducing the pillars as guidelines wouldn't by itself solve our 
problem of narrowing down COGA SC to basics.

Making the pillars into SC means wrenching a guideline into SC form. 
That's not ideal, and it means many aspects of the pillar have to be 
left out in order to meet SC requirements. But the goal of this proposal 
isn't to come up with a perfect or complete set of COGA SC, it's to come 
up with enough that a) there is at least some normative content in WCAG 
2.1 addressing the user groups and b) that we can meaningfully expand on 
them in the supplemental guidance.

This proposal means leaving a lot out, but making a concerted effort to 
have basic coverage nonetheless. It's intended to work with the proposal 
for supplemental guidance, it's probably not something we'd like on its 

I know people would like to see examples of what these pillars might be 
to inform their reaction. I think we should work those details out on 
list, so we sent the proposal without examples to start. I will try to 
take a pass at what pillars could look like soon, and you may see other 
proposals from others as well. Note the goal is to wind up with better 
cognitive accessibility representation in WCAG 2.1 than we currently 
seem on track to accomplish, but initial discussion of the pillars 
proposal may nonetheless be difficult.


On 2017-05-24 2:57 PM, Michael Pluke wrote:
> I’m interested to understand what these pillars might look like. I’ve 
> many times argued that I think that several of the 
> multi-part/multi-bulleted COGA SCs look more like a new WCAG guideline 
> (the overall scope of the draft SC) with several underlying SCs 
> represented by the different bullets (or parts). We know that WCAG 
> guidelines are not meant to be precise or testable, it is only the SCs 
> below it that are.
> I think that it is because we are trying to sell these hybrid 
> guideline/multi-SC proposals as SCs that we hit quite so many 
> testability issues. I suspect several of the objections about 
> untestability often relate to the guideline-like parts of this hybrid 
> construction.
> If we could isolate the potential new guidelines (probably mostly 
> under the “understandable” principle), we would hopefully be allowed 
> to add those to WCAG 2.1 (as there are no testing-related penalties 
> associated with them). We could then look to see which of the 
> bullets/parts that lie underneath the guideline might be robust enough 
> to include in 2.1 and proceed with these. All the other bullets/parts 
> could appear in some form in the supplemental document. If, at a later 
> date, testable SCs related to these bullets/parts can be identified 
> they could easily be added into future versions of WCAG – and they 
> would already have a guideline under which they could sit.
> If this way of viewing our work is accepted, we would be looking for 
> those very narrow and precisely scoped items for trying to get into 
> WCAG 2.1. Every time I have tried to identify these small wins, they 
> have been worked on and developed to increase their scope (a laudable 
> aim but perhaps a self-defeating strategy). We’ve never dared to 
> proceed with a nice simple SC proposal because we continue to aim for 
> the stars.
> Maybe its time to bite the bullet and try to get a few small wins 
> rather than continue with several bold failures?
> Best regards
> Mike
> *From:*Andrew Kirkpatrick [mailto:akirkpat@adobe.com]
> *Sent:* 24 May 2017 19:33
> *To:* Gregg C Vanderheiden <greggvan@umd.edu>
> *Cc:* w3c-waI-gl@w3. org <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
> *Subject:* Re: Proposal for moving COGA SC forward
> As I see it, a “pillar” is a somewhat theoretical construct, but 
> ultimately there would need to be a guideline that is aligned with 
> each of the pillars for COGA support.
> The guideline may exist already, or it may need to be made. In the 
> COGA roadmap document there are eight tables of user needs, some of 
> which are task-specific like “authentication” and others are very 
> broad like “simple and clear interface”. We will be looking at these 
> to see what can be reused, as well as whether these are covered by an 
> existing guideline or not.
> This is quite similar to the work that the Mobile TF has done, 
> resulting in additional guidelines being suggested.
> Thanks,
> Andrew Kirkpatrick
> Group Product Manager, Accessibility
> Adobe
> akirkpat@adobe.com <mailto:akirkpat@adobe.com>
> http://twitter.com/awkawk
> *From: *Gregg Vanderheiden <greggvan@umd.edu <mailto:greggvan@umd.edu>>
> *Date: *Wednesday, May 24, 2017 at 14:21
> *To: *Andrew Kirkpatrick <akirkpat@adobe.com <mailto:akirkpat@adobe.com>>
> *Cc: *WCAG <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org <mailto:w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>>
> *Subject: *Re: Proposal for moving COGA SC forward
> it is not clear what you mean by Pillars
> The standard has informative guidelines and normative SC — which are 
> used to determine conformance.
> What is a Pillar?   Is it normative?  is it informative?
> can you give an example of one — and where it would go in WCAG?
> /g/
> Gregg C Vanderheiden
> greggvan@umd.edu <mailto:greggvan@umd.edu>
>     On May 24, 2017, at 11:18 AM, Andrew Kirkpatrick
>     <akirkpat@adobe.com <mailto:akirkpat@adobe.com>> wrote:
>     We’ve been talking about ways to encourage the inclusion of
>     success criteria that benefit users with cognitive or learning
>     disabilities in WCAG 2.1.  The SC proposed by COGA are not going
>     to all make it into WCAG 2.1 due to a variety of concerns ranging
>     from testability to lack of working group time to discuss all
>     proposals. Unfortunately for end users with disabilities, all of
>     the SC proposed are designed to address real problems faced by
>     some users and without the SC being incorporated into WCAG 2.1 the
>     users are likely to continue to face barriers.
>     Of course, this is also true for low-vision and mobile SC
>     proposals, but the issue is more acute for COGA as the SC
>     proposals are much more numerous and we want to help strategize on
>     how to focus the efforts of the group on a smaller set of COGA SC.
>     With the supplementary guidance document, we will be able to
>     provide additional best practice-level suggestions to improve
>     access for users with cognitive disabilities, but we still want to
>     have a core set of items in WCAG 2.1.
>     We are thinking about defining a set of "pillars of cognitive
>     accessibility" in WCAG 2.1 and then expanding on them in the
>     supplemental guidance. The pillars would likely be based on ideas
>     from the COGA Roadmap and Gap Analysis document
>     (https://rawgit.com/w3c/coga/master/gap-analysis/#roadmap---tables-of-user-needs
>     <https://na01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Frawgit.com%2Fw3c%2Fcoga%2Fmaster%2Fgap-analysis%2F%23roadmap---tables-of-user-needs&data=02%7C01%7C%7C2a805808aae3407fd5b408d4a2d1c58b%7Cfa7b1b5a7b34438794aed2c178decee1%7C0%7C0%7C636312469223990412&sdata=IeGrM93cQ%2FwgPty33yqMZ6t1QbISURKj71%2FDbvcfaIE%3D&reserved=0>)
>     and would provide a structure for 6-8 WCAG 2.1 SC and the
>     additional guidance within the supplementary document would follow
>     the same pattern.
>     This will require some additional work on the part of the COGA TF
>     and from this group as the current proposals may not fit precisely
>     with the pillars. We would be looking to draw from the SC
>     proposals made earlier but only include parts that directly relate
>     to the applicable pillar and that we think can pass the WG
>     consensus process. Remaining concepts from the SC proposals would
>     be targeted for inclusion in the supplemental guidance document.
>     We wanted to see if the WG thinks this approach could work and
>     would support us in making sure we can increase the chance that we
>     have a good core of improvements for COGA in WCAG 2.1. Please let
>     us know if you have any thoughts or concerns.
>     Thanks,
>     AWK
>     Andrew Kirkpatrick
>     Group Product Manager, Accessibility
>     Adobe
>     akirkpat@adobe.com <mailto:akirkpat@adobe.com>
>     http://twitter.com/awkawk
>     <https://na01.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Ftwitter.com%2Fawkawk&data=02%7C01%7C%7C2a805808aae3407fd5b408d4a2d1c58b%7Cfa7b1b5a7b34438794aed2c178decee1%7C0%7C0%7C636312469223990412&sdata=kHrx6JgE8N%2FVfwDMZ3gcVtkFFedIqORIqhKHWfaJFOs%3D&reserved=0>
Received on Thursday, 25 May 2017 17:58:16 UTC

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