David J. Hark

with broad background in media:
Internet, Web, Photography, Digital Imaging


Web Accessibility and Section 508

Training for Experienced

Web Designers

"The wonderful thing about standards
is that there are so many of them to choose from".
Rear Admiral Grace Hopper

Admiral Grace Hopper, USN, with three other programmers at the control panel of the UNIVAC I computer.
Rear Admiral Grace Hopper, USN,
with other programmers at UNIVAC 1.

Software bug  photo


David J. Hark's web site
for the Webucator© Course
Web Accessibility Training for Section 508


This page is divided into the following major sections:


What Do I Call you?

Among people with functional limitations, the term "disability" has become the most widely accepted term. It is an accurate, succinct description, which encompasses most people with physical disabilities.

An example of political correctness is the changing terminology used to described handicapped people. In the past the term "crippled" was perfectly acceptable and not considered offensive. At some point, somebody decided "crippled" was degrading and the preferred term changed to "handicapped". This, too, was eventually deemed offensive and "disabled" became the preferred term. Today, "disabled" is now considered degrading and "differently abled" and "physically challenged" are now the politically correct terms.


Section 508


Microsoft web page with note that accessibility features are not available.


Note about accessibility: This test version of the Microsoft Download
Center does not include accessibility features we normally provide
in our final releases, including support for browser page readers
and the ability to change fonts.


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Review of Section 508 Standards for Web Accessibility

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Other Resources


men attacking an old castle

Users found the site easy and fun to use!

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Write for the web

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the WCAG By David MacDonald © 2005-2008

WCAG 2.0 Theme Song This is the theme song for the new WCAG 2.0 which is a W3C recommendation. Accessibility consultant David MacDonald wrote it during a Face to Face WCAG meeting in Los Angeles. He did the instruments, programming, vocals and mixing in his home studio.

Standards and Organizations

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)

W3C's Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI)

  1. W3C's Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI)     W3C
  2. The W3C's Web Accessibility Initiative Guidelines
  3. WCAG 2 at a Glance
  4. W3C Cheatsheet: Accessibility: WCAG2 at a Glance
  5. Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0     Checklist of Checkpoints
  6. Section 508 Web Standards and WCAG Priority 1 Checkpoints A Side-by-side Comparison
  7. What is the difference between the WAI guidelines and the Section 508 standards for Web accessibility?

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Section 508

Report to the Access Board: Refreshed Accessibility Standards and Guidelines in Telecommunications and Electronic and Information Technology April 2008

  1. The U.S. Access Board
  2. Update of the 508 Standards and the Telecommunications Act Guidelines
  3. Workforce Investment Act of 1998 SEC. 508. ELECTRONIC AND INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY.
  4. Web-based Intranet and Internet Information and Applications (1194.22)    [June 21, 2001]
  5. The Sixteen Section 508 1194.22 Requirements & Instructions  [David's Page]
  6. Section 508 demo and test page home
  7. Section 508 to be updated
  8. WebAIM Section 508 Checklist
  9. Section 508: The Road to Accessibility
  10. Department of Justice Section 508 Home Page
  11. Accessibility Forum Website      Test bed
  12. Department of Veterans Affairs
    1. Accessible Electronic Information Technology - Section 508
    2. Section 508 Training & Awareness
  13. Section 508 Web Standards and WCAG Priority 1 Checkpoints A Side-by-side Comparison
  14. JimThatcher.com Web Accessibility for Section 508 
  15. Section 508 Self-Evaluation
  16. Webmaster's Section 508 Discussion List    [Department of Veterans Affairs ]
  17. Accessibility Forum's    Section 508 demo and test page home  
  18. Links to Federal Agency Public URL's on Section508 Policy, Guidance, and Best Practices
  19. Section 508 and The NASA Web Portal
  20. Goddard Section 508 Best Practices
    1. Living Examples
    2. Section 508 Web Accessibility Checklist

508 vs WAI

  1. Section 508 Web Standards & WCAG Priority 1 Checkpoints: A Side-by-side Comparison
  2. Section 508 and WCAG Sidebar
  3. If a web site is WCAG A-Compliant and its author wants to be Section 508 compliant as well, these are the five standards he must address additionally.
    These are paragraphs 1194.22 (l), (m), (n), (o), and (p).

Americans with Disabilities Act

  1. A Guide to Disability Rights Laws
  2. DisabilityInfo.gov
  3. ADA Home Page - ada.gov
  4. Department of Justice ADA Technical Assistance CD-ROM     order
  5. The Americans With Disabilities Act   [ the text ]
  6. Applying the ADA to the Internet: A Web Accessibility Standard
  7. U.S. Department of Justice ADA Title II Highlights
  8. Americans with Disabilities Act Document Center
  9. ADA celebrates 12th birthday with civic compliance
  10. A Progress Report on Fulfilling America's Promise to Americans with Disabilities
  11. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): 1990 - 2002
  12. Should Web-only businesses be required to be disabled-accessible?  [CNN.com Nov 7, 2002]

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Organizations and Companies



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JISC TechDis Accessibility Essentials

  1. Making Electronic Documents More Readable
  2. Writing Accessible Electronic Documents with Microsoft® Word  
  3. Creating Accessible Presentations
  4. Making the Most of PDFs



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Trace Research and Development Center - Trace Center

University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign

Accessibility 101

WebAIM: Web Accessibility in Mind


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Technologies and Issues

Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA)


Semantic Markup

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Assistive Technology



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JavaScript and Dynamic HTML Accessibility


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Web 2


Web sites that already meet WCAG or MWBP are already well on the way to meeting the other.

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Testing Sevices

Vision Issues

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Screen Readers

YouTube Captions and Subtitles

Add multiple captions or subtitle tracks to your videos! About captions and subtitles feature http://www.youtube.com/t/ca... English script can be found here. http://sites.google.com/sit...

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Podcasts / Video


Social Accessibility

Accessibility Training On-Line

  1. Webucator
    1. Accessibility Tutorial: Learn Accessibility
    2. Accessibility Tutorial: An Introduction to Section 508
  2. Introduction to Web Accessibility
  4. Section 508 Training
  5. Access E-Learning     [ Georgia Tech Research on Accessible Distance Education ]
  6. NWS   NOAA   Internet/Intranet Accessibility Tutorial
  7. Web Accessibility 101    [ University of Wisconsin-Madison ]
  8. Art of ALT    captioned video example

Accessibility Forums On-Line

  1. the Accessibility Forum
  2. AccessifyForum
  3. WebAIM Accessibility Forums
  4. w3c-wai-ig@w3.org Mail Archives
  5. mozilla . dev . accessibility
  6. Trace   "sec508" Thread Index
  7. Blogging Against Disablism

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Accessibility Around the World



European Union

United Nations

New Zeland

United States




United Kingdom

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Examples and Example Sites


Other Examples

MIT OpenCourseWare
6.931 Development of Inventions and Creative Ideas
Is the MIT OpenCourseWare site compliant with W3C standards and accessibility requirements?
Vision Australia
American Council of the Blind
A Guide to Making Documents Accessible to People Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired
American Printing House for the Blind, Inc.
Good Text/Background Color Combinations
Poor Text/Background Color Combinations
Language Log: The main job of the girl brain
Their table of raw and adjusted results is here.
Scrupulously avoiding sigma [check the table]  effect size
House Committee on Agriculture
digNubia: Exploring the Science of Archaeology
Switch to the HTML version of Dignubia
Welcome to SFGOV - Official San Francisco
Web Accessibility    ReadSpeaker
Welcome to SFGOV in Mini Opera Simulator
Program Schedule SFGTV & SFGTV2
BART has created special web pages with fewer images, less text and simple formatting that can be displayed by most mobile web browsers. Your device might show things a little differently, but click here see a working example.
Welcome to the Town of Richmond Hill Website
Visit the Town of Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada, the municipal government that is a little north, a little nicer. Town Hall, Mayor and Council, Municipal Services, Business, Parks & Recreation, Department and Affiliate pages.
Mayor and Council
Mayor & Members of Council (2006-2010). Image is an image map allowing access to individual pages.
Fairfax County, VA
Current Site
New Site Design 
Color Vision Simulator Examples
Vischeck's color vision model allows you to simulate how the world looks to people with various sorts of color deficiency.
How do babies see the world? Note: "Quick baby facts!" on the right side. Accessible? swimmers All the images have the same alt="Baby looking at toys"
Notice the camouflage netting
Is this a "Quality Text Alternative"
http://www.jim-crace.com/     screen capture
title: Untitled Document, frames, "link" for The Pest House (2007) is not a link
Accessibility Design and Features
This site is designed with accessible features and considerations to give all visitors a similar browsing experience. (Society for Technical Communication, STC, Washington DC chapter)
TV Converter Box Coupon Program Website - Privacy Policy & Accessibility   screen capture
Links are not underlined and are a light blue, close to text in tone.
Accessible Web Design Examples
These examples have been created to help directly identify common 508 issues. Code is provided for advanced users.
Section 508 - NOAA's National Weather Service
Check the link color with CSS disabled
Where do you want to be?
Linking directly to an image doesn't allow for alternative text.
Aquatic Arts - Learn by Example
In order to illustrate the best practices for accessible web page design, we have created a website that contains both Inaccessible & Accessible pages. These examples should provide solutions to the most common accessibility issues currently facing web content managers.
Accessible University (AU) mock site
The Accessible University (AU) mock site was developed by AccessIT as a tool for demonstrating web accessibility principles.  Index of Accessible University Pages       Non-Frames Version      Frames Version
Photoshop Pattern Stamp Tool
Transcript available for narrated flash demonstration
Meet the Professionals Shawn Henry
In English with Japanese subtitles.  English Transcript    Download for iPod
How to Change Text Size or Colors
The WAI Web site is designed to let you change the text size, text and background colors, and other display settings through standard browser settings.
Introduction to the Screen Reader
"Introduction to the Screen Reader" with Neal Ewers of the Trace Research Center is a short 6 minute video demonstrating how screen readers assist people who are blind navigate the web, access the electronic page, and more.
About Eogogics
[How to say Eogogics - please have speakers on]
Animated GIFs to test for Flickering and Photosensitive Epilepsy    Flicker Rate Test for GIF images
Animated gif images
Your Lucky Day?
NCAM Rich Media Accessibility > Flicker Demo
[flash images that flicker at 4Hz, 7Hz, 20Hz, and 59Hz. ]
YTMND - 3.141592653589793...
And with the CSS disabled, we see....
NASA Goddard: Section 508 Best Practices
Living Examples
Example of Poor Contrast
What Is Web 2.0
Print       Listen
Browser Test
Follow the sequence of links and take note of what your browser and computer can and cannot do. Florida Gulf Coast University
How would you make these sites more accessible?
William Gibson - Official Website
Nebraska Department of Roads
What is the future of the internet?     "Web Science"
Raining Browsers
In the Beginning: Bibles Before the Year 1000    No transcript of audio
Berkeley Springs Cottage Rentals: Home    585 images w/o alt
The Web Page From Hell
««««edderkop net»»»»    [Warning! Spiders!]
Digital Picture Postcards   No images?
No Maps for these Territories - William Gibson   No images?
2Advanced Studios    CSS?
Honda Accord Ad
Index of Places in England and Wales   <pre>
Index of /pub
What's so funny about a 404 Error message? No JavaScript...
Douglas Crockford's Javascript
Live Snapshots of Muni Subway

Webucator Evaluation System

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