fallback
A stairway and a ramp are both perfectly fine!
Home » A stairway and a ramp are both perfectly fine!

A stairway and a ramp are both perfectly fine!

A concrete ramp next to a concrete stair on a University Campus

An ideal world?

Wouldn't it be wonderful if we all lived in a world where every website or web portal was fully accessible to everyone, regardless of their abilities or disabilities?

Unfortunately, it's not always possible and it is only often uncovered during accessibility testing.

A recent evaluation

We've recently completed an evaluation of a web portal. A questionnaire needed to be filled out before any of the modules could be accessed. The number of questions varied, ranging from 16 to over 80, with five possible responses for each question.

The interface was designed so that the current question was displayed in an appealing box, with the previous question above and the next question below, both shown in a more translucent manner. After answering one question, it visually moved up, and the next question became active. It looked really nice. Regrettably, not accessible.

The issue was that it was not accessible. Iona, who uses a screen reader, couldn't operate it at all. Mede, Krista, and Lleona, all using screen readers, could use it to some extent, but each question had six responses instead of five. One of them was empty and hidden because it was necessary for the system to operate, but it became quite tiresome with a screen reader after a while.

Additionally, the screen reader didn't read out the question to be answered in the first place. If I hadn't informed them, they wouldn't have known what the question was. Eventually, they figured it out, but it was all a bit awkward.

The client suggested an alternative

The client asked if it was acceptable to have a simpler text-only version offered as an alternative, to which I happily agreed. I also mentioned that by providing this alternative for everyone, it might also be used by other individuals who find any kind of screen movement distracting.

They assured us that they could implement this quickly, benefiting everyone much sooner than anticipated!

Having a lift next to a staircase is a positive thing! They don't have to be mutually exclusive!

Caption: A concrete ramp next to a concrete stair on a University Campus. This is supporting the idea that is is OK to offer different ways of accessing a website.

Would you like to find out more?

Clive Loseby
Access by Design / Access by Audit
WCAG Compliant, Accessible Websites, Beautifully Designed
Always Delivering an Outstanding WCAG 2.2 Website Accessibility Audit