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Re: CSS and accessibility

From: Elizabeth J. Pyatt <ejp10@psu.edu>
Date: Mon, 8 Aug 2005 09:24:14 -0400
Message-Id: <p06230901bf1d0b31f033@[]>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

Joe Clark wrote:

>One's esteemed colleague Richard Rutter asks what specific benefits 
>for accessibility CSS actually has.

I agree that caution should be used in equating CSS with 
accessibility - you can create inaccessible (but valid) CSS as easily 
as inaccessible HTML.

But there are some tangible benefits including:
a. better margin control than you can get with plain HTML - no more 
text running to the side
b. ability to increase line spacing for readability.
c. the ability to create rollover links without javascript - screen 
readers see these as "regular" links
d. control some aspects of layout without HTML TABLE's (I did finally 
realize that screen readers announce all tables in advance, even the 
layout tables)

In fact, the Penn State accessibility Website has a page on just this issue

And reducing the amount of HTML clutter with CSS reduces download 
times of pages, which does benefit everyone.


Elizabeth J. Pyatt, Ph.D.
Instructional Designer
Education Technology Services, TLT/ITS
Penn State University
ejp10@psu.edu, (814) 865-0805 or (814) 865-2030 (Main Office)

210 Rider Building II
227 W. Beaver Avenue
State College, PA   16801-4819
Received on Monday, 8 August 2005 13:46:26 UTC

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