Umbrella and empty wheelchair overlook the ocean on a cloudy day.
Accessibility, Writers/Editors

Universal Design II

Many web content management systems make it easy to create a site with high contrast options and alternative text where it needs to be (so long as you populate this). They can be designed to open hyperlinks in new windows. Unfortunately many people don’t realize that their downloadable attachments aren’t automatically accessible. PDFs, text documents, and even spreadsheets should all be checked for accessibility and modified if needed.

The use of styles, headings, and designated line spaces or indents can help reduce some of the most common accessibility issues with text-based documents. Most office-focused software (spreadsheets, word processors, etc) have built in accessibility checkers that are programmed to identify elements you may have missed. Common missing features include a document title (different from a file name), alt text, table headings or description, and high contrast between the background and text.

If you’re responsible for content on a website, whether it’s used internally by staff or externally by clients or stakeholders, it’s critical to keep accessibility in mind. If you don’t know how to check the accessibility of your document, do a quick search for your software application and “accessibility checker.” You should get step-by-step instructions or even a video for this process.

Click the Accessibility link above this blog’s title for more articles on this topic.

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