This Wiki page is edited by participants of the Cognitive and Learning Disabilities Accessibility Task Force. It does not necessarily represent consensus and it may have incorrect information or information that is not supported by other Task Force participants, WAI, or W3C. It may also have some very useful information.

Good and bad practices

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Please note this are just ideas for brainstorming. Do not quote or reuse information on this page. If you would like to add any information here and do not have direct access, you can send that by email to Kinshuk at kinshuk@ieee.org.

Inclusive design ideas

Please use the same format when adding ideas (We do not need to add ideas already in WCAG 2.0)

  1. Make the sections of the page visually clear.
    1. Pass example: High contrast, easy to see lines between sections of content and controls that belong together. Such as section for drafting an email with controls for saving and drafting the email all have a clear boundary and background color.
    2. Failure example: Very thin light grey lines divide sections of an email application. Sections of the page include area for switching between applications and settings, folders, individual emails.
    3. Pass Example: Empty/white space between page elements.
    4. Failure Example: No/little separation of page elements.
    5. Helpful for: All our user groups
    6. Todo - find or perform useability research
    7. Suggested by Lisa and Niel Lisa Seeman (talk)
  2. Make the boundaries of clickable regions clear.
    1. Pass example: Clickable areas are drawn as buttons. Clicking on the button generates a click event, clicking on the page background does not trigger an event.
    2. Failure example: Some words next to each other are act as different buttons or links. clicking on the white space between the text will generate the link of the word that is closer to it.
    3. Helpful for: All our user groups
    4. Todo: find or perform useability research
    5. Suggested by Lisa and Niel Lisa Seeman (talk)
  3. Give all the sections of the page headings. (Also see WCAG 2.4.10)
    1. Pass example: section clearly labeled
    2. Failure example: long text with no sub headings
    3. Failure example: group of related form controls without a heading or legend
    4. Helpful for: All our user groups?
    5. Todo - find or perform useability research
    6. Suggested by Lisa Lisa Seeman (talk)
  4. Avoid changes to the content as user goes though the page
    1. Pass example: no pop up menus, no mouse over effects
    2. Failure example: mouse over popups and effects
    3. Helpful for: user groups with attention issues
    4. Todo - find or perform useability research
    5. Suggested by Lisa Lisa Seeman (talk)

Also see http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/about-dyslexia/further-information/dyslexia-style-guide.html

Ideas from WCAG

Guideline 1.3 Adaptable

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

Guideline 1.4 Distinguishable:

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)

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)

1.4.7 Low or No Background Audio: (Level AAA) ...

1.4.8 Visual Presentation: For the visual presentation of blocks of text, a mechanism is available to achieve the following: (Level AAA)

  • Foreground and background colors can be selected by the user.
  • Width is no more than 80 characters or glyphs (40 if CJK).
  • Text is not justified (aligned to both the left and the right margins).
  • Line spacing (leading) is at least space-and-a-half within paragraphs, and paragraph spacing is at least 1.5 times larger than the line spacing.
  • Text can be resized without assistive technology up to 200 percent in a way that does not require the user to scroll horizontally to read a line of text on a full-screen window.

Guideline 2.2 Enough Time: Provide users enough time to read and use content.

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) ....

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

2.2.3 No Timing: Timing is not an essential part of the event or activity presented by the content, except for non-interactive synchronized media and real-time events. (Level AAA)

2.2.4 Interruptions: Interruptions can be postponed or suppressed by the user, except interruptions involving an emergency. (Level AAA)

2.2.5 Re-authenticating: When an authenticated session expires, the user can continue the activity without loss of data after re-authenticating. (Level AAA)

Guideline 2.4 Navigable: Provide ways to help users navigate, find content, and determine where they are

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

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

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

2.4.8 Location: Information about the user's location within a set of Web pages is available. (Level AAA)


2.4.9 Link Purpose (Link Only): A mechanism is available to allow the purpose of each link to be identified from link text alone, except where the purpose of the link would be ambiguous to users in general. (Level AAA)

2.4.10 Section Headings: Section headings are used to organize the content. (Level AAA)

Guideline 3.1 Readable: Make text content readable and understandable.

3.1.3 Unusual Words: A mechanism is available for identifying specific definitions of words or phrases used in an unusual or restricted way, including idioms and jargon. (Level AAA)

3.1.4 Abbreviations: A mechanism for identifying the expanded form or meaning of abbreviations is available. (Level AAA)


3.1.5 Reading Level: When text requires reading ability more advanced than the lower secondary education level after removal of proper names and titles, supplemental content, or a version that does not require reading ability more advanced than the lower secondary education level, is available. (Level AAA)

Note the techniques contain advisory suggestions on how to do this. Providing sign is a sufficient technique.

3.1.6 Pronunciation: A mechanism is available for identifying specific pronunciation of words where meaning of the words, in context, is ambiguous without knowing the pronunciation. (Level AAA)

Guideline 3.2 Predictable: Make Web pages appear and operate in predictable ways.

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


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)

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

3.2.5 Change on Request: Changes of context are initiated only by user request or a mechanism is available to turn off such changes. (Level AAA

Guideline 3.3 Input Assistance: Help users avoid and correct mistakes.

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)


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

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)

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

3.3.5 Help: Context-sensitive help is available. (Level AAA)

3.3.6 Error Prevention (All): For Web pages that require the user to submit information, at least one of the following is true: (Level AAA)

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