University Web Developers

University Web Developers

Designing Accessible Web Forms



Problems of Accessible Web Forms


A recent survey of over 20,000 web pages found on over 250 higher education websites found that less than 27% of the web pages that have form controls use proper labeling for accessibility.  Creating web forms that are accessible
to people with disabilities requires understanding of the labeling features of
HTML markup and how browsers interpret labeling markup for assistive
technologies like screen readers. The course will start by using simulations to
help participants understand the issues people with disabilities face when
using the web. Participants will learn the basics of labeling form controls,
how to indicate required controls and provide feedback on invalid responses in
a way that is usable by people with disabilities. Examples of more complex
labeling of form controls for dates, phone numbers, validation codes and high
density surveys will be included in the course. Participants will learn CSS
techniques to layout form controls without using tables and how to highlight
the active form control using CSS pseudo elements. The last part of the course
will provide a preview of the form labeling capabilities of the new
Accessibility Rich Internet Accessibility (ARIA) specifications which provide
new capabilities to label form controls and provide accessible feedback on form
validation as required by the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0.


Who Should Participate in the Course?


This course is designed for web developers interested in learning about the disability access issues faced by people with disabilities in using the web and how web forms can be designed to be accessible to people with disabilities.
Participants should be familiar with HTML coding and the form elements.
Knowledge of basic CSS techniques and javascripting will be helpful, but not a
required part of the course.


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