Friday, July 27, 2012

Web Accessibility Policy and the Penn State Experience

Terrill Thompson – Technology Accessibility Specialist

Web and IT Accessibility Policy in Higher Education

·         Discussion

  • National Federation of the Blind is actively suing universities. One of their goals, apparently, is to use universities (which must address accessibility) to pressure vendors (which are not included in accessibility laws) to improve accessibility in their products
  • Generally, NFB will not sue an institution that has a plan for addressing accessibility and is working on it. They are more likely to focus on institutions that have drifted toward environments that are inaccessible through lack of policy and planning.

Rick Ells – UW-IT Web Guy

The Penn State Experience

·         Discussion

  • Viewpoints expressed
    • It would be good to avoid a lawsuit.
    • We need top down push that accessibility is important, everyone is expected to comply with standards
    • Much work on accessibility is already going on at many levels. Much could be achieved by making people aware of each other’s good work
    • We need to decide what standard we are shooting for: WCAG 2 Level AA, updated 508, or what?
    • There needs to be a Web site people can go to that says how to test your site’s accessibility and how to fix its problems.
    • How about some events? Perhaps some coding competitions to address puzzles, or a un-conference of Web developers addressing accessibility
    • How can we do this that we do not over specify and thus squish innovation and creative designs?