Newsletter Archives - February 2005

Note

This newsletter is maintained here for archival purposes. The content presented here may be outdated, may contain out-of-date links, and may not represent current best practices or represent the opinion and recommendations of WebAIM. For up-to-date information, please refer to the WebAIM web site.

Web Accessibility Resource Planner (WARP) by WebAIM

Beta Version Released: warp.webaim.org

WARP is part of WebAIM's K-12 initiative, administered through a grant provided by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) of the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS). Our goal is to improve accessibility to online learning opportunities for all people; in particular to improve accessibility for individuals with disabilities who currently may have a difficult time getting access to the general curriculum in K-12 educational settings.

WebAIM has found that few teacher training and certification institutions across the U.S. teach the issues and strategies of Web accessibility. Instructors of these courses may be more likely to embed accessibility if they have access to content, simulations, assignments, and evaluation tools. The WARP was designed for this purpose, as well as any other teaching opportunity that involves Web accessibility.

By using the WARP, you can easily peruse Web accessibility resources, organize resources into an online lesson, and view lessons other users have created. These online resources include tutorials, simulations, activities, and articles. The WARP is FREE to use! Check it out: warp.webaim.org. We invite you to participate in testing the WARP and providing us with feedback to improve it for you and other users. If you would like to be involved in Beta testing, contact Mike Lyman. If you have suggestions and feedback, contact the WebAIM team.

Featured Article

Accessibility Features in Adobe Reader 7

Author: Jon Whiting (WebAIM)

Not everyone creates PDF (Portable Document Format) files, but almost everyone who uses the Web has used Adobe Acrobat Reader to read PDFs. Unfortunately, PDF files have not always been as accessible as they are now. In the past, Adobe PDF files could be very inaccessible, especially to people using screen readers. This began to change with Acrobat 5, when Adobe introduced the ability to tag PDF files for accessibility. With the advent of Acrobat Reader 6 (full version), Adobe embedded a scaled-down screen reader into the Reader software itself. Adobe Reader 7 continues to improve the user's accessibility to PDF files by making it much easier to customize user preferences and accessibility settings. This article will provide a step-by-step overview of most prominent accessibility features of Adobe Reader 7.

Read the full article: Accessibility Features in Adobe Reader 7

On Target Tip

Developing Sites for Users with Cognitive Disabilities and Learning Difficulties

When we think about Web accessibility, there's a tendency to overlook people with cognitive disabilities and learning difficulties. This article by Roger Hudson, Russ Weakley, and Peter Firminger, examines the types of problems visitors may encounter when using the Web, with insightful and practical suggestions on how to develop Web sites that are inclusive for people with cognitive disabilities and learning difficulties. (Source:juicystudio.com)

Guidelines for Accessible and Usable Web Sites: Observing Users Who Work with Screen Readers

The findings of observing several screen reader users provide tips for Web designers to implement as they design with accessibility in mind. (Source:www.redish.net)

On Target Resources

Results: 2004 Survey on Access Technology in Higher Education

Compare yourself, your company and/or your organization with others who responded to this survey designed by Access Technologists Higher Education Network (ATHEN). This report gathers and consolidates the practices, experiences, and professional development needs of people supporting assistive technology and information technology accessibility on college campuses. (Source: staff.washington.edu/tft/athen)

VIS: Visual Impairment Simulator

VIS is a tool used to show computer users what it is like to use a computer with a visual disability. When the program runs, it manipulates the images on the user's screen so that it appears as if the user has color-blindness or macular degeneration among other visual disablities. (Source: www.uiuc.edu)

Accessible Technologies for All Students

The Accessible Technologies for All Students Project is a major new leadership initiative of the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN). The goal of this initiative is increased achievement and success for all students through the unlimited and effective use of accessible technologies. (Source:www.accessibletech4all.org)

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