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Re: Web accessibility and usability


From: Annmarie L Gemma
Date: Oct 30, 2004 12:47PM


While reviewing www.w3.org/WAI/bcase/benefits.html that you suggested, I came across a very helpful table that summarizes checkpoints that contribute to different design categories including: usability, public search engine, low bandwidth, support low literacy, and semantic web.

Checkpoint 1.1 Provide text equivalent for non-text element was listed as contributing to usability, and other categories including public search engine and low bandwidth.

I can understand how "alt" attributes benefit search engine results and users with low bandwidth, but I wasn't clear on how it is important for usability for people without disabilities. Does anyone have opinions on this?

It is my hope to demonstrate that accessibility efforts also improve the experience of users without disabilities. I'm planning to do some usability tests with visually impaired users and then users without disabilities.

Would anyone anticipate the presence of "alt" as improving the experience of users without disabilities (in terms of any of the metrics noted on UsableNet: time, number of errors, success rate, and subjective rating)?

Thank you very much for any help that you can offer.


----- Original Message -----
From: Andrew Arch
Date: Sunday, October 10, 2004 6:33 am
Subject: RE: [WebAIM] Web accessibility and usability

> Hi Annmarie,
> Don't know of any formal studies (apart from the
> Microsoft/Forrester one),
> but many people have written articles on this topic. E.g.:
> 1.
> www.webcredible.co.uk/user-friendly-resources/web-
> accessibility/web-accessib
> ility-usability.shtml
> 2. www.w3.org/WAI/bcase/benefits.html
> 3. http://www.uiaccess.com/upa2000a.html
> 4. http://ausweb.scu.edu.au/aw02/papers/refereed/arch/index.html
> 5. http://www.frontend.com/accessibility_paper.html#Usability
> Andrew
> _________________________________
> Dr Andrew Arch
> Manager Online Accessibility Consulting
> Accessible Information Solutions, NILS
> Ph 613 9864 9222; Fax 613 9864 9210; Mobile 0438 755 565
> http://www.nils.org.au/ | http://www.it-test.com.au/ |
> http://www.ozewai.org/
> Member, Education & Outreach Working Group,
> W3C Web Accessibility Initiative
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/EO/
> National Information & Library Service, Australia
> A subsidiary of RBS.RVIB.VAF Ltd.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: alg230 [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ]
> Sent: Sunday, 10 October 2004 5:35 AM
> To: WebAIM Discussion List
> Subject: [WebAIM] Web accessibility and usability
> Hello All,
> I am in the early stages of a master's thesis. The topic that I
> would like
> to explore is how (whether) web accessibility promotes usability by
> non-disabled users. In other words, I am interested in making a
> case for
> how accessibility benefits more than the disabled segment of a web
> site'scustomer base.
> For the purposes of a literature survey, I was wondering if anyone
> might be
> aware of previous studies that have been completed for this topic.
> In
> addition, all opinions are most welcome and very much appreciated.
> It would
> be helpful to know in advance whether a study on this topic would
> be useful
> to the web accessibility community.
> Thank you for your time...
> Sincerely,
> Annmarie Gemma
> Master's Candidate in Management &amp; Systems
> New York University
> ----
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