Creating accessible content

Is the content you’ve written accessible? Does it meet the standards set out in the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0? Do you know how to check if your content is accessible? Try these exercises and see if you can make some improvements.

For these exercises, you’ll need a web browser and an accessibility checking tool.  Try:

Before you start, you might want to read:

Exercise 1

Select 5 pages where you’ve included images.

Does each image have an appropriate blank, short or long text alternative?

Exercise 2

Check any pages where you’ve used complex graphics: pie charts, graphs, maps, flow charts, decision trees. Have you:

  • Provided a long text alternative (on the same page or on a linked page) for the content included in the graphic?
  • Used a short text alternative to identify the graphic and say where the long text alternative is?

Exercise 3

Select 5 pages where you’ve included graphics (not photographs).

For each graphic, check the contrast between the text and the background colour using the Colour Contrast Analyser (free download).

Does the contrast pass at level-AA (using the luminosity option)? Note: large text is at least 14 points bold, or 18 points.

Exercise 4

Select a longer page you’ve published.

Check the headings are tagged correctly.

  • Ignore headings that relate to standard parts of your web page (header, footer and any side bars) and focus only on the headings in the content you’ve created.
  • Can you see a proper heading hierarchy where your main heading is h1, sub-headings h2, sub-sub-headings h3 (and so on)?

Correct any errors by re-tagging your headings as needed.

Exercise 5

Select 5 pages where you’ve used dot points or numbered lists.

Check the lists are tagged correctly.

Correct any errors by re-tagging your lists as needed.

Exercise 6

Check the last 10 pages you’ve published.

Have you indented any text on these pages?

  • If so, check if the indented text has <blockquote> tags around it?
  • If it does, remove the tags unless the text is a quotation.

Exercise 7

Check the last 10 pages you’ve published.

Have you included any links on these pages? If so:

  • Are your links labelled with meaningful words?
  • Have you avoided ‘click here’, ‘read more’, ‘learn more’ and other generic labels?

Exercise 8

Check any pages that have information presented in table format.

  • Does each table have a meaningful title (using a heading or caption tag)?
  • Are there any rows or columns have meaningful labels?
  • Are the header cells marked as headers (using the <th> tag)?