Fine Point #14: Making Your Page Accessible

It's easy to forget that not everyone is able to perceive your web pages the way you do. If you're designing your pages with the hope that people you'll never meet will be using them (and you should), you'll need to consider the fine points of making them accessible.

You can check your pages for accessibility by calling up the new Bobby page, though you might find that to be unduly daunting.

The IBM Guidelines for Web Accessibility page lists 11 recommendations for web page designers. For most WebQuest pages, you'll probably only need to think about rules #1, #2 and #10.

Rule #10 is pretty self-evident. It recommends that you make your hyperlinks self-descriptive (like the IBM one in the paragraph above) rather than links that simply say click here.

Rules #1 and #2 are about providing a text alternative to every graphical link. By doing so, the visually impaired will be able to have the computer read the page to them. When the computer comes to a graphic, it reads the text caption which (if written correctly) will communicate at least some of the information provided by the graphic.

To do this, all you need to do is use the <ALT> tag.

Here's how to do it with Home Page | Netscape Composer

This page was designed by Bernie Dodge (with the advice of Mary Lange) for the Triton and Patterns Projects of San Diego Unified School District. Last updated July 15, 1999.

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