Techniques for WCAG 2.0

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G160: Providing sign language versions of information, ideas, and processes that must be understood in order to use the content


All technologies.

This technique relates to:


For some people who are deaf or have certain cognitive disabilities, sign language may be their first language. A sign language version of the page may be easier for them to understand than a written language version. The objective of this technique is to provide sign language versions of content that help signing users understand difficult text that describes concepts or processes. The sign language content is provided in addition to the text.

Since this is supplemental content (and not sign language for speech in content) it should be viewed as separate from the content and would not necessarily be synchronized. Although there may be occasions when that would be useful, it is not required.

To make the sign language version available with the rest of the Web page contents, the video may be embedded in the Web page directly or the Web page may include a link that brings up a video player in a separate window. The sign language version could also be provided via a link to a separate Web page that displays the video.

Sign language is a three-dimensional, visual language that uses the hands, arms, shoulders, head, face, lips and tongue of the signer. For viewers to understand what is being signed, the video must record the sign language completely. Generally speaking, the signer should be as close to the camera as possible without risking cut-offs (such as hands moving outside the video).

Information on how to find sign language interpreters is listed in the resources section below.

Note 1: If the video stream is too small, the sign language interpreter will be indiscernible. When creating a video stream that includes a video of a sign language interpreter, make sure there is a mechanism to play the video stream full screen in the accessibility-supported content technology. Otherwise, be sure the interpreter portion of the video is adjustable to the size it would be had the entire video stream been full screen.

Note 2: Since sign language is not usually a signed version of the printed language, the author has to decide which sign language to include. Usually the sign language of the primary audience would be used. If intended for multiple audiences, multiple sign languages may be used. Refer to advisory techniques for multiple sign languages.



Resources are for information purposes only, no endorsement implied.

See also Related Resources for Success Criterion 1.2.6 - Sign Language.



  1. Identify text that discusses ideas or processes that must be understood in order to use the content.

  2. Check if sign language supplements to the text are available in the content or through links within the content.

  3. Check that the sign language supplements show the concepts or processes discussed in the text.

Expected Results

If this is a sufficient technique for a success criterion, failing this test procedure does not necessarily mean that the success criterion has not been satisfied in some other way, only that this technique has not been successfully implemented and can not be used to claim conformance.