Web checklist

IBM Web Accessibility Checklist 5.2, Section 508 standards, and WCAG 2.0

The IBM Web Accessibility Checklist version 5.2 incorporates requirements from Section 508 and the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0) Recommendation dated 12 December 2008.

This table compares the IBM Web Accessibility Checklist with the Section 508 standards and WCAG 2.0.

IBM Web 5.2 Checkpoint Section 508 Standard WCAG 2.0

1.1a: Text Alternatives
All non-text content that is presented to the user has a text alternative that serves the equivalent purpose.

1194.22 (a) A text equivalent for every non-text element shall be provided (e.g., via "alt", "longdesc", or in element content).

1.1.1 Non-text Content: All non-text content that is presented to the user has a text alternative that serves the equivalent purpose, except for the situations listed below. (Level A)

Controls, Input: All non-text content that is presented to the user has a text alternative that serves the equivalent purpose, except for the situations listed below. (Level A)

Time-Based Media: If non-text content is time-based media, then text alternatives at least provide descriptive identification of the non-text content. (Refer to Guideline 1.2 for additional requirements for media.)

Test: If non-text content is a test or exercise that would be invalid if presented in text, then text alternatives at least provide descriptive identification of the non-text content.

Sensory: If non-text content is primarily intended to create a specific sensory experience, then text alternatives at least provide descriptive identification of the non-text content.

CAPTCHA: If the purpose of non-text content is to confirm that content is being accessed by a person rather than a computer, then text alternatives that identify and describe the purpose of the non-text content are provided, and alternative forms of CAPTCHA using output modes for different types of sensory perception are provided to accommodate different disabilities.

Decoration, Formatting, Invisible: If non-text content is pure decoration, is used only for visual formatting, or is not presented to users, then it is implemented in a way that it can be ignored by assistive technology.

1.1b: Non-text Content
A descriptive label is provided for time-based media, including live audio-only and live video-only content. Non-text content that is used to confirm that content is being accessed by a person rather than a computer is available in different forms to accommodate multiple disabilities.

N/A

1.1.1 Non-text Content: All non-text content that is presented to the user has a text alternative that serves the equivalent purpose, except for the situations listed below. (Level A)

See 1.1.1 above for complete text of guideline.

1.1c: Image maps
Client-side image maps are used and alternative text is provided for image map hot spots. Equivalent text links are provided if a server-side image map is used.

1194.22 (e) Redundant text links shall be provided for each active region of a server-side image map.

1194.22 (f) Client-side image maps shall be provided instead of server-side image maps except where the regions cannot be defined with an available geometric shape.

N/A

1.2a: Captions
Captions are provided for pre-recorded multimedia.

1194.22 (b) Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation.

1.2.2 Captions (Prerecorded): Captions are provided for all prerecorded audio content in synchronized media, except when the media is a media alternative for text and is clearly labeled as such. (Level A)

1.2b: Audio and Video (Prerecorded)
An alternative for time-based media or audio description of the prerecorded video content is provided for synchronized media, except when the media is a media alternative for text and is clearly labeled as such.

1194.22 (b) Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation.

1.2.1 Audio-only and Video-only (Prerecorded): For prerecorded audio-only and prerecorded video-only media, the following are true, except when the audio or video is a media alternative for text and is clearly labeled as such: (Level A)

Prerecorded Audio-only: An alternative for time-based media is provided that presents equivalent information for prerecorded audio-only content.

Prerecorded Video-only: Either an alternative for time-based media or an audio track is provided that presents equivalent information for prerecorded video-only content.

1.2.3 Audio Description or Media Alternative (Prerecorded): An alternative for time-based media or audio description of the prerecorded video content is provided for synchronized media, except when the media is a media alternative for text and is clearly labeled as such. (Level A)

1.2c: Live Multimedia
Captions are provided for live multimedia.

1194.22 (b) Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation.

1.2.4 Captions (Live): Captions are provided for all live audio content in synchronized media. (Level AA)

Note: This is an AA requirement in WCAG 2.0

AA1.2.4 Captions (Live) Captions are provided for all live audio content in synchronized media.
Note: Compliance with Web checkpoint 1.2c: Live Multimedia, meets this WCAG 2.0 Level AA requirement.

1194.22 (b) Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation.

1.2.4 Captions (Live): Captions are provided for all live audio content in synchronized media. (Level AA)

AA1.2.5 Audio Description
Audio description is provided for all prerecorded video content in synchronized media.

N/A

1.2.5 Audio Description (Prerecorded): Audio description is provided for all prerecorded video content in synchronized media. (Level AA)

1.3a: Information and Relationships
Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text.

N/A

1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)

1.3c: Meaningful Sequence
When the sequence in which content is presented affects its meaning, a correct reading sequence can be programmatically

N/A

1.3.2 Meaningful Sequence: When the sequence in which content is presented affects its meaning, a correct reading sequence can be programmatically determined. (Level A)

1.3d: Forms
Form element labels can be programmatically determined.

1194.22 (n) When electronic forms are designed to be completed on-line, the form shall allow people using assistive technology to access the information, field elements, and functionality required for completion and submission of the form, including all directions and cues.

1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)

1.3e: Tables
Table cells and relationships between cells can be programmatically determined.

1194.22 (g) Row and column headers shall be identified for data tables.

1194.22 (h) Markup shall be used to associate data cells and header cells for data tables that have two or more logical levels of row or column headers.

1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)

1.3f: Cascading style sheets
Web pages are readable without requiring style sheets.

1194.22 (d) Documents shall be organized so they are readable without requiring an associated style sheet.

1.3.1 Info and Relationships: Information, structure, and relationships conveyed through presentation can be programmatically determined or are available in text. (Level A)

1.3g: Sensory Characteristics
Instructions provided for understanding and operating content do not rely solely on sensory characteristics of components such as shape, size, visual location, orientation, or sound.

N/A

1.3.3 Sensory Characteristics: Instructions provided for understanding and operating content do not rely solely on sensory characteristics of components such as shape, size, visual location, orientation, or sound. (Level A)

1.4a: Use of Color
Color is not used as the only visual means of conveying information, indicating an action, prompting a response, or distinguishing a visual element.

1194.22 (c) Web pages shall be designed so that all information conveyed with color is also available without color, for example from context or markup.

1.4.1 Use of Color: Color is not used as the only visual means of conveying information, indicating an action, prompting a response, or distinguishing a visual element. (Level A)

Note: This success criterion addresses color perception specifically. Other forms of perception are covered in Guideline 1.3 including programmatic access to color and other visual presentation coding.

1.4b: Audio Control
If any audio on a Web page plays automatically for more than 3 seconds, either a mechanism is available to pause or stop the audio, or a mechanism is available to control audio volume independently from the overall system volume level.

N/A

1.4.2 Audio Control: If any audio on a Web page plays automatically for more than 3 seconds, either a mechanism is available to pause or stop the audio, or a mechanism is available to control audio volume independently from the overall system volume level. (Level A)

Note: Since any content that does not meet this success criterion can interfere with a user's ability to use the whole page, all content on the Web page (whether or not it is used to meet other success criteria) must meet this success criterion.

AA1.4.3 Contrast (Minimum)
The visual presentation of text and images of text has a contrast ratio of at least 4.5:1, except for large print and images of large print, which must have a contrast ratio of 3:1. Decorative images and logotypes are exempt from this requirement.

N/A

1.4.3 Contrast (Minimum): The visual presentation of text and images of text has a contrast ratio of at least 4.5:1, except for the following: (Level AA)

  • Large Text: Large-scale text and images of large-scale text have a contrast ratio of at least 3:1;
  • Incidental: Text or images of text that are part of an inactive user interface component, that are pure decoration, that are not visible to anyone, or that are part of a picture that contains significant other visual content, have no contrast requirement.
  • Logotypes: Text that is part of a logo or brand name has no minimum contrast requirement.

AA1.4.4 Resize text
Text (but not images of text) can be resized without assistive technology up to 200 percent without loss of content or functionality.

N/A

1.4.4 Resize text: Except for captions and images of text, text can be resized without assistive technology up to 200 percent without loss of content or functionality. (Level AA)

AA1.4.5 Images of Text Use text to convey information rather than images. An image of text may be used when it is essential to the information being conveyed and the image can be visually customized to the user's requirements.

N/A

1.4.5 Images of Text: If the technologies being used can achieve the visual presentation, text is used to convey information rather than images of text except for the following: (Level AA)

  • Customizable: The image of text can be visually customized to the user's requirements;
  • Essential: A particular presentation of text is essential to the information being conveyed.

Note: Logotypes (text that is part of a logo or brand name) are considered essential.

2.1a: Keyboard.
All functionality of the content is operable through a keyboard interface without requiring specific timings for individual keystrokes, except where the underlying function requires input that depends on the path of the user's movement and not just the endpoints.

N/A

2.1.1 Keyboard: All functionality of the content is operable through a keyboard interface without requiring specific timings for individual keystrokes, except where the underlying function requires input that depends on the path of the user's movement and not just the endpoints. (Level A)

Note 1: This exception relates to the underlying function, not the input technique. For example, if using handwriting to enter text, the input technique (handwriting) requires path-dependent input but the underlying function (text input) does not.

Note 2: This does not forbid and should not discourage providing mouse input or other input methods in addition to keyboard operation.

2.1b: Scripts.
Scripts are keyboard accessible. If the content affected by scripting is not accessible, an alternative is provided.

1194.22 (l) When pages utilize scripting languages to display content, or to create interface elements, the information provided by the script shall be identified with functional text that can be ready by assistive technology.

2.1.1 Keyboard: All functionality of the content is operable through a keyboard interface without requiring specific timings for individual keystrokes, except where the underlying function requires input that depends on the path of the user's movement and not just the endpoints. (Level A)

Note 1: This exception relates to the underlying function, not the input technique. For example, if using handwriting to enter text, the input technique (handwriting) requires path-dependent input but the underlying function (text input) does not.

Note 2: This does not forbid and should not discourage providing mouse input or other input methods in addition to keyboard operation.

2.1c: Applets, plug-ins, and non-HTML content.
A link is provided to a directly accessible applet, plug-in or other application. Alternate content is provided for those applets, plug-ins or other applications that are not directly accessible.

1194.22 (m) When a web page requires that an applet, plug-in or other application be present on the client system to interpret page content, the page must provide a link to a plug-in or applet that complies with 1194.21 (a) through (l).

2.1.1 Keyboard: All functionality of the content is operable through a keyboard interface without requiring specific timings for individual keystrokes, except where the underlying function requires input that depends on the path of the user's movement and not just the endpoints. (Level A)

Note 1: This exception relates to the underlying function, not the input technique. For example, if using handwriting to enter text, the input technique (handwriting) requires path-dependent input but the underlying function (text input) does not.

Note 2: This does not forbid and should not discourage providing mouse input or other input methods in addition to keyboard operation.

2.1d: No Keyboard Trap.
If keyboard focus can be moved to a component of the page using a keyboard interface, then focus can be moved away from that component using only a keyboard interface, and, if it requires more than unmodified arrow or tab keys, the user is advised of the method for moving focus away.

N/A

2.1.2 No Keyboard Trap: If keyboard focus can be moved to a component of the page using a keyboard interface, then focus can be moved away from that component using only a keyboard interface, and, if it requires more than unmodified arrow or tab keys or other standard exit methods, the user is advised of the method for moving focus away. (Level A)

Note: Since any content that does not meet this success criterion can interfere with a user's ability to use the whole page, all content on the Web page (whether it is used to meet other success criteria or not) must meet this success criterion.

2.2a: Adjust time response.
The user is allowed to turn off, adjust or extend all time limits that are not a real-time, essential or 20 hour exception.

1194.22 (p) When a timed response is required, the user shall be alerted and given sufficient time to indicate more time is required.

2.2.1 Timing Adjustable: For each time limit that is set by the content, at least one of the following is true: (Level A)

Turn off: The user is allowed to turn off the time limit before encountering it; or

Adjust: The user is allowed to adjust the time limit before encountering it over a wide range that is at least ten times the length of the default setting; or

Extend: The user is warned before time expires and given at least 20 seconds to extend the time limit with a simple action (for example, "press the space bar"), and the user is allowed to extend the time limit at least ten times; or

Real-time Exception: The time limit is a required part of a real-time event (for example, an auction), and no alternative to the time limit is possible; or

Essential Exception: The time limit is essential and extending it would invalidate the activity; or

20 Hour Exception: The time limit is longer than 20 hours.

Note: This success criterion helps ensure that users can complete tasks without unexpected changes in content or context that are a result of a time limit. This success criterion should be considered in conjunction with Success Criterion 3.2.1, which puts limits on changes of content or context as a result of user action.

2.2b: Pause, Stop, Hide.
The user is allowed to pause, stop, or hide moving, blinking, scrolling, or auto-updating information unless it is an essential part of an activity.

N/A

2.2.2 Pause, Stop, Hide: For moving, blinking, scrolling, or auto-updating information, all of the following are true: (Level A)

Moving, blinking, scrolling: For any moving, blinking or scrolling information that (1) starts automatically, (2) lasts more than five seconds, and (3) is presented in parallel with other content, there is a mechanism for the user to pause, stop, or hide it unless the movement, blinking, or scrolling is part of an activity where it is essential; and

Auto-updating: For any auto-updating information that (1) starts automatically and (2) is presented in parallel with other content, there is a mechanism for the user to pause, stop, or hide it or to control the frequency of the update unless the auto-updating is part of an activity where it is essential.

Note 1: For requirements related to flickering or flashing content, refer to Guideline 2.3.

Note 2: Since any content that does not meet this success criterion can interfere with a user's ability to use the whole page, all content on the Web page (whether it is used to meet other success criteria or not) must meet this success criterion. See Conformance Requirement 5: Non-Interference.

Note 3: Content that is updated periodically by software or that is streamed to the user agent is not required to preserve or present information that is generated or received between the initiation of the pause and resuming presentation, as this may not be technically possible, and in many situations could be misleading to do so.

Note 4: An animation that occurs as part of a preload phase or similar situation can be considered essential if interaction cannot occur during that phase for all users and if not indicating progress could confuse users or cause them to think that content was frozen or broken.

2.3a: Flashing Content or Below Threshold.
Web pages do not contain anything that flashes more than three times in any one second period, or the flash is below the general flash and red flash thresholds.

1194.22 (j) Pages shall be designed to avoid causing the screen to flicker with a frequency greater than 2Hz and lower than 55 Hz.

2.3.1 Three Flashes or Below Threshold: Web pages do not contain anything that flashes more than three times in any one second period, or the flash is below the general flash and red flash thresholds. (Level A)

Note: Since any content that does not meet this success criterion can interfere with a user's ability to use the whole page, all content on the Web page (whether it is used to meet other success criteria or not) must meet this success criterion.

2.4a: Navigational features.
A mechanism is available to bypass blocks of content that are repeated on multiple Web pages.

N/A

2.4.1 Bypass Blocks: A mechanism is available to bypass blocks of content that are repeated on multiple Web pages. (Level A)

2.4b: Navigate to main content.
Methods are provided for skipping over navigation links to get to the main content of the page.

1194.22 (o) A method shall be provided that permits users to skip repetitive navigation links.

N/A

2.4c: Frames.
A title and an accessible frame source are provided for each frame.

1194.22 (i) Frames shall be titled with text that facilitates frame identification and navigation.

2.4.1 Bypass Blocks: A mechanism is available to bypass blocks of content that are repeated on multiple Web pages. (Level A)

2.4d: Page Titles and Link Purpose.
Web pages have titles that describe topic or purpose.

N/A

2.4.2 Page Titled: Web pages have titles that describe topic or purpose. (Level A)

2.4e: Focus Order.
If a Web page can be navigated sequentially and the navigation sequences affect meaning or operation, focusable components receive focus in an order that preserves meaning and operability.

N/A

2.4.3 Focus Order: If a Web page can be navigated sequentially and the navigation sequences affect meaning or operation, focusable components receive focus in an order that preserves meaning and operability. (Level A)

2.4f: Link Purpose.
The purpose of each link can be determined from the link text alone or from the link text together with its programmatically determined link context, except where the purpose of the link would be ambiguous to users in general.

N/A

2.4.4 Link Purpose (In Context): The purpose of each link can be determined from the link text alone, or from the link text together with its programmatically determined link context, except where the purpose of the link would be ambiguous to users in general.

AA2.4.5 Multiple Ways
More than one way is available to locate a Web page within a set of Web pages except where the Web Page is the result of, or a step in, a process.

N/A

2.4.5 Multiple Ways: More than one way is available to locate a Web page within a set of Web pages except where the Web Page is the result of, or a step in, a process. (Level AA)

AA2.4.6 Headings and Labels
Headings and labels describe topic or purpose. 

N/A

2.4.6 Headings and Labels: Headings and labels describe topic or purpose. (Level AA)

AA2.4.7 Focus Visible
Any keyboard operable user interface has a mode of operation where the keyboard focus indicator is visible.

N/A

2.4.7 Focus Visible: Any keyboard operable user interface has a mode of operation where the keyboard focus indicator is visible. (Level AA)

3.1a: Language of Page.
The default human language of each Web page can be programmatically determined.

N/A

3.1.1 Language of Page: The default human language of each Web page can be programmatically determined. (Level A)

AA3.1.2 Language of Parts
The human language of each passage or phrase in the content can be programmatically determined except for proper names, technical terms, words of indeterminate language, and words or phrases that have become part of the vernacular of the immediately surrounding text.

N/A

3.1.2 Language of Parts: The human language of each passage or phrase in the content can be programmatically determined except for proper names, technical terms, words of indeterminate language, and words or phrases that have become part of the vernacular of the immediately surrounding text. (Level AA)

3.2a: On Focus.
When any component receives focus, it does not initiate a change of context.

N/A

3.2.1 On Focus: When any component receives focus, it does not initiate a change of context. (Level A)

3.2b: On Input.
Changing the setting of any user interface component does not automatically cause a change of context unless the user has been advised of the behavior before using the component.

N/A

3.2.2 On Input: Changing the setting of any user interface component does not automatically cause a change of context unless the user has been advised of the behavior before using the component. (Level A)

AA3.2.3 Consistent Navigation
Navigational mechanisms that are repeated on multiple Web pages within a set of Web pages occur in the same relative order each time they are repeated, unless a change is initiated by the user.

N/A

3.2.3 Consistent Navigation: Navigational mechanisms that are repeated on multiple Web pages within a set of Web pages occur in the same relative order each time they are repeated, unless a change is initiated by the user. (Level AA)

AA3.2.4 Consistent Identification
Components that have the same functionality within a set of Web pages are identified consistently.

N/A

3.2.4 Consistent Identification: Components that have the same functionality within a set of Web pages are identified consistently. (Level AA)

3.3a: Error Identification.
If an input error is automatically detected, the item that is in error is identified and the error is described to the user in text.

N/A

3.3.1 Error Identification: If an input error is automatically detected, the item that is in error is identified and the error is described to the user in text. (Level A)

3.3b: Labels or Instructions.
Labels or instructions are provided when content requires user input. For all user interface components, the name and role can be programmatically determined, values that can be set by the user can be programmatically set, and notification of changes to these items is available to user agents, including assistive technologies.

N/A

3.3.2 Labels or Instructions: Labels or instructions are provided when content requires user input. (Level A)

AA3.3.3 Error Suggestion
If an input error is automatically detected and suggestions for correction are known, then the suggestions are provided to the user, unless it would jeopardize the security or purpose of the content.

N/A

3.3.3 Error Suggestion: If an input error is automatically detected and suggestions for correction are known, then the suggestions are provided to the user, unless it would jeopardize the security or purpose of the content. (Level AA)

AA3.3.4 Error Prevention (Legal, Financial, Data)
Web pages used for legal commitments or financial transactions, that modify or delete user-controllable data in a data storage system, or submit user test responses must 1) allow the user to reverse the submission, OR 2) be checked for input errors and provide the user with the ability to correct input before submission OR 3) allow the user to review, confirm and correct information before finalizing the submission.

N/A

3.3.4 Error Prevention (Legal, Financial, Data): For Web pages that cause legal commitments or financial transactions for the user to occur, that modify or delete user-controllable data in data storage systems, or that submit user test responses, at least one of the following is true: (Level AA)

  1. Reversible: Submissions are reversible.
  2. Checked: Data entered by the user is checked for input errors and the user is provided an opportunity to correct them.
  3. Confirmed: A mechanism is available for reviewing, confirming, and correcting information before finalizing the submission.

4.1a: Parsing.
In content implemented using markup languages, elements have complete start and end tags, elements are nested according to their specifications, elements do not contain duplicate attributes, and any IDs are unique, except where the specifications allow these features.

N/A

4.1.1 Parsing: In content implemented using markup languages, elements have complete start and end tags, elements are nested according to their specifications, elements do not contain duplicate attributes, and any IDs are unique, except where the specifications allow these features. (Level A)

Note: Start and end tags that are missing a critical character in their formation, such as a closing angle bracket or a mismatched attribute value quotation mark are not complete.

4.1b: Name, Role, Value.
For all user interface components (including but not limited to: form elements, links and components generated by scripts), the name and role can be programmatically determined; states, properties, and values that can be set by the user can be programmatically set; and notification of changes to these items is available to user agents, including assistive technologies.

N/A

4.1.2 Name, Role, Value: For all user interface components (including but not limited to: form elements, links and components generated by scripts), the name and role can be programmatically determined; states, properties, and values that can be set by the user can be programmatically set; and notification of changes to these items is available to user agents, including assistive technologies. (Level A)

Note: This success criterion is primarily for Web authors who develop or script their own user interface components. For example, standard HTML controls already meet this success criterion when used according to specification.

4.2a: Text-only page.
If accessibility cannot be accomplished in any other way, a text-only page with equivalent information or functionality is provided.

1194.22 (k) A text-only page, with equivalent information or functionality, shall be provided to make a web site comply with the provisions of this part, when compliance cannot be accomplished in any other way. The content of the text-only page shall be updated whenever the primary page changes.

N/A

4.2b: Accessibility-Supported Technologies Only.
Use accessibility supported technologies. Any information or functionality that is implemented in technologies that are not accessibility supported must also be available via technologies that are accessibility supported.

N/A

All WCAG 2.0 Success Criteria are written as testable criteria for objectively determining if content satisfies them. Testing the Success Criteria would involve a combination of automated testing and human evaluation. The content should be tested by those who understand how people with different types of disabilities use the Web. Understanding Conformance.

 

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