Simple accessibility heuristics for UX walkthroughs

Michael S Elledge elledge at
Fri Sep 7 17:12:05 UTC 2007

Hi Colin--

I would also add some more specifics about content organization, such  
as if there are paragraph headings, table captions and section  
headings in forms. Although their presence doesn't guarantee that  
there is related accessibility coding, it certainly takes us a step  
closer to its implementation. I'd also add a comment about ensuring  
that link phrases make sense on their own, since they are a common  
means of navigation.

We may also want to give reviewers the option of using a browser-based  
tool to look at particular accessibility elements that otherwise are  
hidden from view, unless you think it would make the us process too  
lengthy, or intrude on the access expert role.

See the template and protocol we've used for Sakai: 
  as an example.


On Sep 7, 2007, at 11:29 AM, Greg Gay < at> wrote:

> Hi Colin
> The only thing I might add is a check for text alternatives for  
> graphic
> content. Usually that means including Alt text with images, but also  
> Alt
> for image buttons, clientside Map areas, etc, and empty Alt for
> meaningless or decorative images. Unfortunately it normally means
> examining HTML, though in IE 6 if one holds a mouse pointer over an
> image with Alt text, it will display.
> Missing text alternatives for visual content is the #1 accessibility
> barrier, and as such is listed in the guidelines as the first
> requirement for compliance (WCAG 1.0 Guideline 1.1)
> greg
> Colin Clark wrote:
>> Hi everyone,
>> I've drafted a page that outlines the simple heuristics I have been
>> using for the UX walkthroughs while evaluating accessibility:
>> To be clear, this is intended as an easy process that anyone can  
>> pick up
>> relatively quickly, even without any expertise in accessibility. It
>> isn't intended as a substitute for testing with real assistive
>> technologies, evaluation tools, and an "under the covers"  
>> inspection of
>> the markup.
>> On the other hand, they're easy, low cost, and don't require any
>> substantial technical or accessibility expertise. A perfect fit for
>> anyone doing a UX walkthrough of Moodle, uPortal, or Sakai.
>> Thoughts? Suggestions?
>> Colin
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