Compliance driven accessibility testing is on the rise – both by mandates imposed by statutory bodies as well as increase in awareness for the need to accommodate the differently abled masses as well in digital solutions. One of the core standards that has been playing a major role in the drive towards accessibility is WCAG 2.0 – the web content accessibility guidelines is one that is a part of Sec 508 primarily focusing on web accessibility guidelines. These guidelines are fairly intuitive and easy to adopt – more importantly flexible enough to enable organizations decide what level of compliance they want to enforce.
WCAG offers three levels to choose from – A, AA, AAA, with A being the easiest and AAA being the hardest. However AA is a good level that most settle with covering a range of categories to ensure the content and application is perceivable, operable, understandable and robust. Some of the core categories include provision of text alternatives, audio video content, adaptability, distinguishability, keyboard accessibility, predictability etc. While these may appear comprehensive, with a little extra effort from the developer and testers’ parts, it is fairly a quickly accomplishable effort. Especially for developers, ARIA (Accessibility Rich Internet Guidelines) is a great resource to quickly and effectively incorporate accessibility provisions into the code base. From a tester’s angle as well WCAG is a great start to determine what to focus on, providing an organized approach to test from varied guidelines standpoint – based on the user base an organization is targeting, they can thus decide which guidelines to go with strengthening their hold in this space. Today, the testing tool market is also very robust offering a good set of tools both for web and mobile accessibility empowering not just accessibility testers but even functional testers take on basic accessibility checks.
We at QA InfoTech, have been providing WCAG based accessibility testing services for the last several years now including accessibility engineering workshops for developers and testers. It is welcoming to see the demand in this space which shows the increasing attention to accessibility that organizations are paying and WCAG has played a significant role in this increased adoption.