Brickfield accessibility tips
Imagine a world where learning is accessible to all. Where online course content works for all learners by default rather than only when exceptions are made. Imagine where barriers are not created because of budgets, or lack of training, lack of priority and lack of awareness and of understanding.
Accessible course content helps everyone. Focusing on delivering accessible Layout, Text, Tables, Links, images and Media lays the foundations for accessible and inclusive interaction in courses.
This goal is where we are all going, a journey from where we are now to where we want to be.
Below we have six steps that will help you on your accessibility journey!
1. Layout Tips
- Headings and in order.
Use heading elements as provided by your text editor to differentiate titles from text and to show their hierarchy. Remember to use headings in a logical, sequential order.
- Meaningful titles.
Use section headings and meaningful titles per topic so it’s easier to navigate to correct sections and understand the structure.
- Bullet point lists.
Create proper list elements using your text editor tools. Remember to finish each item with a period or comma as appropriate.
2. Accessible Text Tips
- Plain language.
Use plain, concise language. Be consistent throughout the course with your language, terminology (e.g. course) and page structure.
- Minimise capital usage.
Ensure capitalisation is minimised as this makes text harder to read. Only use where appropriate (e.g. acronyms, logos).
- Colour contrast.
Ensure strong enough contrast between text and its background, and be wary of light shades, especially grey and yellow.
3. Accessible Table Tips
- Create simple tables.
Create simple tables, one table per topic, and one piece of data per cell. Avoid use of nested tables as this complicates navigation by keyboard.
- Define headers on columns and rows.
Each column and row should have a header both technically and visually. It creates a more structured table, easier to read for all.
- Use tables only for data.
Use tables only to organise tabular data, keep them as simple as possible. Avoid using images of tables instead of proper tables.
4. Accessible Link Tips
- Descriptive and unique.
Ensure each link on the page is unique and descriptive. For example, avoid using “Click here” or “download”.
- Page title instead of URL as link text.
Use the name of the page / site in a link text rather than the URL itself. Use plain, concise, and consistent language for your link text.
- Links should look like links.
Content links should be styled to look different to text. Ensure you use adequate colour contrast and underlining on hyperlink text.
5. Accessible Image Tips
- Explain image in alt text.
Provide a meaningful description relevant to your teaching purpose in the alt tag. Describe complex images completely in your text.
- Good resolution and contrast.
Ensure strong enough contrast for the image elements, be wary of light shades, especially grey and yellow. Use sharp, clear and good resolution images.
- No text images.
Use normal text instead of images with just text and add styling if required. Avoid the use of scientific notation as an image, use MATHJAX or LaTeX instead.
6. Accessible Media Tips
- Closed captions for audio and video.
Provide synchronized captions, i.e. text versions of the spoken words and sounds presented in audio and video.
- Provide transcripts as well.
Provide transcripts of audio recordings and videos. Transcripts aid searching and readability over just using captions.
- Avoid autoplay.
Ensure the video player enables the learner to stop and play the video or audio. Controls should also work with the keyboard only.