Web Accessibility for Developers

Who this section is for

If your job has you doing any of the following tasks, you should read and understand this complete guide:

  • Building website templates
  • Building web-based components, such as CMS or LMS plugins
  • Building build web-based software or reports

If you only edit website's through the use of the campus CMS, Cascade Server, then you should read For Web Page Editors instead.

How to get started

If web accessibility is a new topic for you, then we suggest thinking about these topics first:

  1. Learn about the types of disabilities that are out there (and watch some videos of students talking about their experience)
  2. Read the UM Electronic and Information Technology Policy
  3. Familiarize yourself with all of WCAG 2.0 AA standards
  4. Install some tools to help you with the process

Why this is important

Web accessibility is important for many key reasons:

  1. On average, 20% of a population has some kind of disability
  2. Montana's state constitution recognizes a right to individual dignity
  3. Federal law (both the ADA and Section 504 of the American Rehabilitation Act) require us to make websites accessible
  4. UM entered a resolution agreement with the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights
  5. UM adopted a formal Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Policy

Your responsibility

As a web developer you are responsible for:

  • Understanding UM's EITA policy and procedures (section 1 especially: web accessibility)
  • Building fully accessible websites and applications according to WCAG 2.0 AA standards