Simple accessibility heuristics for UX walkthroughs

David Bolter david.bolter at
Fri Sep 7 17:25:03 UTC 2007

If we start considering less simple processes I should mention in dojo 
we include manual (for now) testing with images turned off as well as 
Windows high-contrast mode.  This gives us pretty good coverage for alt 
text support and image-off support in general.

The FF Web Developer Toolbar is very useful for resizing the browser to 
specific resolutions (perhaps useful for checking mobile usage).

Etc. Etc. ;)


Greg Gay 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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