Enabling Websites: W3C/WAI Accessibility Guidelines

Shadi Abou-Zahra, W3C/WAI

(alternate presentation format available)

World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)

"Leading the Web to its full potential"

Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI)

WAI develops strategies, guidelines, resources to make the Web accessible:

What is Web Accessibility?

Web accessibility means that people with disabilities can use the Web

Human right UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)

Web Accessibility Barriers

Examples of barriers on the Web include:

Impact of Web Accessibility

Web accessibility also benefits many other users, with and without disabilities:

Over 65% can benefits from accessibility (Microsoft)

Business Benefits

Web accessibility is also a market opportunity:

Scope of Web Accessibility

Web accessibility is supported by several key components:

Components of Web Accessibility

Essential Components of Web Accessibility

Example: Requirement

An example requirement from WCAG:
- provide a text equivalent for every non-text element

WAI Accessibility Guidelines

W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) develops and maintains:


Example: Workflow

specific example for alternative text on images which is a requirements by the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0. Web developers provide text alternatives for the images using authoring tools. The HTML specification provides a mechanism to supplement images with such text. Finally, this redundant coding is used by browsers and assistive technology to convey the information to the end users according to their preferences, for example visually, through voice synthesis, or in form of text.

Introducing WCAG 2.0

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0
- W3C Web standard since 11 December 2008

WCAG 2.0 - Structure

Note: WCAG 1.0 had 14 Guidelines and 65 Checkpoints

WCAG 2.0 - Principles

"POUR accessibility with WCAG 2.0":

WCAG 2.0 - Guidelines

Examples of WCAG 2.0 Guidelines:

WCAG 2.0 - Success Criteria

Examples of WCAG 2.0 Success Criteria:

WCAG 2.0 Techniques

Techniques provide guidance on applying WCAG 2.0:

Techniques are technology-specific (e.g. HTML, CSS, Scripting, PDF, Flash, Silverlight, ...)

WCAG 2.0 - Quick Reference
Screen shot of How To Meet WCAG 2.0 available at

WCAG 2.0 - Dynamic Checklist

How To Meet WCAG 2.0

Steps to Implementation

Summary and Conclusion


Thank You

Shadi Abou-Zahra, W3C/WAI
Activity Lead, WAI International Program Office