IBM Accessibility Checklist for Web and Web-Based Documentation

Version 6.1

This is the IBM Accessibility Checklist for Web and Web-Based Documentation - Version 6.1. It replaced IBM Web Accessibility Checklist 5.2 on August 25, 2016.

This checklist and its checkpoint pages position IBM web products in preparation for the US Section 508 Refresh, while still ensuring compliance with existing 508 requirements. IBM teams should comply with all of the checkpoints as soon as possible. Review the last section on this page, Using the IBM Accessibility Checklist, for more information.

The Summary of Changes lists all substantial modifications to this checklist since its release.

*N/A for most non-web Software = Applies to web applications but not to most non-web Software

IBM Accessibility Checklist v1.0 for Web IBM Accessibility Checklist v1.0 for Software IBM Accessibility Checklist v1.0 for Documentation

WCAG 2.0 Checkpoints

Legacy Non-WCAG 508 Checkpoints

These checkpoints represent 508 requirements that are not covered by WCAG techniques and need to be tested for all teams. Links in this section open up legacy 5.2 checkpoints.

Legacy 508 Web Checkpoints

These checkpoints represent Section 508 requirements that are subsets of WCAG requirements. If teams pass all WCAG checkpoints, the following can all be reported as compliant. Links in this section open up legacy 5.2 checkpoints.

508 Web Documentation Checkpoints

This checkpoint is for reporting Section 508 documentation requirements. It is only applicable when carrying out web-based documentation testing.

Using the IBM Accessibility Checklist

Checkpoints are divided into sections that match the standards they reflect or enforce.

Applications may be web-based or client-side software. Examples of applications are email clients, word processors, help desk systems, content management systems, and e-learning courseware. There will be some additional notes in the rationales or general techniques of some checkpoints on how to apply WCAG 2.0 to non-web software, or if a checkpoint does not apply to software. These software notes can be disregarded by web development teams.

This section encompasses a few existing 508 web requirements which have no equivalent with WCAG checkpoints. By isolating these requirements, teams are able to accurately report compliance with 508 while reporting related WCAG compliance separately. See the Legacy Non-WCAG 508 to 5.2 checkpoint comparison section of the Checklist 6.1 to 5.2 Comparison and Impact Analysis page for information on completion.

This section encompasses a few existing 508 web requirements which do not match precisely with WCAG checkpoints. By isolating these requirements, teams that do not fully meet WCAG standards are able to accurately report compliance with 508 while reporting related WCAG compliance separately. See the Legacy 508 Web to 5.2 checkpoint comparison section of the Checklist 6.1 to 5.2 Comparison and Impact Analysis page for guidance.

The section has a single checkpoint on documentation (using the 508 Refresh numbering).


Most links in this checklist reside outside ibm.com at the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0. W3C Recommendation 11 December 2008: http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20/

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