How people with disabilities use the Web

How people with disabilities use the Web

Types of disabilities

  • Auditory
  • Cognitive, learning, and neurological
  • Motor/Physical
  • Speech
  • Visual

People with disabilities use assistive technology and adaptive tools to navigate the Web. We need to ensure our site complies with standards that allow assistive technology and tools to correctly interpret and render content.

Common assistive technology and accessibility tools

  • Screen magnifier is used by the visually-impaired.
  • Screen reader is by the blind. This is a speech output system that reads out text on the screen.
  • Onscreen keyboard is used by people with mobility impairment who physically cannot use a mouse and need to rely on the keyboard for Web browsing.
  • Refreshable Braille display is used by the deaf-blind.

Some people use a combination of technology and tools.

Common barriers to people with disabilities and to search engines

  • Information that requires vision to access.
  • Videos with voices and sounds without captions or transcriptions.
  • Poor colour contrast between foreground and background.
  • Complex and cluttered page navigation and layout.
  • Moving, blinking, flickering content.
  • Tables not used for displaying tabular data.
  • Poorly drafted copy.
  • Non-HTML documents; such as PDF, DOC, and XLS.
  • Text, images, and page layouts that cannot be resized.

We can all help remove accessibility barriers

Further reading