One of the things that I'm constantly talking about in my courses is accessibility. The things is that I've come to realize is that I can talk about this as much as I want but it's really up to me to show to you why it's so important for you to make the Web as accessible as possible for others. So today we're going to talk about three things. First, I would like to explain what a Web accessibility professional does. Second, we're going to talk in-depth about how disabilities relate to the Web. Finally, I am going to introduce for the first time the four principles of accessible interface design. These four principles are something that will hopefully guide you throughout the entire time you're making Web pages. So let's start off with this whole idea of what a Web accessibility coordinator does. One of my pet peeves is people who say they don't wanna go into technology because they'd rather do something where they can help people. Well, my follow-through to that is that, if you really want to help people, you need to understand technology. So, one of the things that people like to do is find careers where they can help people who have issues, and work together with people who are in technology. And that's exactly the type of thing a Web accessibility coordinator will do. So first, one thing they might do is help guide policy and purchasing decisions, on what kind of software is most accessible to the widest range of people. Second, they can evaluate Web interfaces for accessibility. So by learning just some key tips and tricks they can go to different pages and find out where there might be pitfalls for people. Third, they can assist people with disabilities to access online infrastructure. Most universities and large companies will always have someone who's job it is to assist those who need some help accessing online material. Or really, any type of technological tools. Fourth, it's very important that people keep pace with changing technology. You will always have a job if you can find a way to combine your love with helping people with the different tools that are being used. So, let's talk specifics. According to the 2012 U.S. Census, 1 in 5 people in the U.S. have a disability. That means that there are 60 million people in the U.S. who are dealing with issues that other people may not have. And half of them are impeded from using the Internet. So we will talk briefly about four issues that tend to pop up the most when dealing with disabilities and the Internet. Visual issues, hearing, motor and cognitive. When you talk about accessibility almost everyone thinks about screen readers. They design and say, oh I'm gonna make sure that my page will read well on a screen reader. However, it's much much more than that. While 1.8 million people are completely blind, we also have 8 million people who have difficulty reading ordinary newsprint even with their glasses on. So one of the things that we want to think about when we're designing is more than just font size, we also need to think about color contrast. Your different font style. Can someone really see your page as easily as possible? We also want to think about hearing disabilities. We're talking about from partial to total deafness. So 8 million people have difficulty hearing in normal conversation and 1 million are completely deaf. More and more places are moving to online presence and of course we all know that watching videos online is a very common thing. We're all doing it right now. So one of the things to think about if you decide to add videos to your site is did you include the close captioning to really make sure as many people as possible can access your content. But there's also other things to think about. Are you blaring music? You might have users who don't even realize that music is playing. Or perhaps you have things so low that people can't quite grasp what you're saying. One of the things we're gonna talk about is making sure that people have the ability to control the different multimedia that you're gonna put on your page. This is going to help people with hearing disabilities feel that they are in command of the technology, not that the technology's in command of them. One of my own personal issues is that of motor disabilities. There are many, many people who are unable to use a mouse or a physical keyboard. Maybe they have slow response time or just limited fine motor skills. So dexterity issues are something that affects 8 million people who have difficulty using their arms or hands. But my guess is that for most of us have had some issue with trying to use the Web, and haven't been quite able to do what we hope to do. So one issue that we talked about is what happens when someone tries to tab through your page. This is a very common way for people to get through pages. But unless you're very careful you can make it that people tab through to nowhere. Another issue is do you require a steady hand? Many people like to add flashy and cool graphics and animations to the their page. But I know that I personally have been frustrated at trying to click a button while the button keeps moving around the screen. Another issue is cognitive disabilities and when we talk about cognitive disabilities, there's a very wide range of issues we might be talking about. There's learning disabilities, distractibility, dyslexia. Even the ability to remember or focus on large amounts of information. Some of the things I was laughing at when I looked at this slide just now is that this slide, perhaps, has too much text on it for people to really be able to focus on what I'm looking at. So, we're saying that there are 16 million adults with ADD or ADHD. Another overlooked population is that there are a large number of soldiers, Marines, and National Guard members who have different psychological conditions such as traumatic brain injury, or post-traumatic stress disorder. Now what does that have to do with making your Web accessible? We wanna make sure that things are easy to understand, not flashing, not requiring great amounts of concentration. Cognitive disabilities number greater than physical and perceptual disabilities combined. So it's something that you want to think about when you're designing your page, or even if you're just help other people design theirs. So let's get the specific stats because nothing helps me convince people more that they want to design for the Web than showing them the numbers. So almost 10% of the U.S. population has two or more disabilities. 40 thousand people in the U.S. are both deaf and blind. So think about trying to access technology when you have those types of issues. 41% of adults 65 and older have a disability. And there are almost 9 million people with disabilities who are poor. 70% of the disabled are underemployed or unemployed. The issue is not that they are not able to do the jobs that are out there. Many times there are roadblocks put up there that they can't get through in order to do jobs that they are very well qualified for. So the Web offers unprecedented opportunities for the disabled. Here we are right now all taking a class online. So education has the benefit in that we teachers can reach as many people as we can. And for students, it means that you have access to resources that you never had before. Many, many people get their news from online resources so we wanna make sure that we make it available to everybody. Commerce I find particularly interesting because many many places have online presences but are even realizing that they're alienating such a large customer base? And of course the social benefits of the Web are easy to see, so many people have created more friends online than they actually have in real life. So the benefits of the Web are amplified for the disabled. People who before could not access education, news, commerce or social interaction, are now able to do that. So the Web is an enabling technology and we want to make sure that we continue to make it so. So hopefully I convinced you just from a human standpoint that it's important to make your Web pages accessible, but there are of course legal aspects as well. The Department of Justice is in the process of updating the American with Disabilities Act to include online resources of state and local entities. What this means is that universities, state governments, local governments all need to make sure that the information they have online is accessible to everyone. There are many instances of case law where individuals or groups have filed civil complaints against universities, companies because they feel that their products are not accessible to people in a way that it should be. So, let's just review this for a second. What is Web accessibility? What it is is making sure that you're making your Web accessible for the widest possible audience, this includes people with permanent disabilities and those with temporary disabilities. Currently, the online infrastructure, while a wonderful resource, is hostile to those with disabilities. Another issue you want to think about is that accessibility is inseparable from search engine optimization, mobile technology, and usability. Improve one of these things and you can improve all the others. So what's the best way to accomplish accessibility? It's adherence to standards. As you start now, you're at the very beginning of your Web career. It's the perfect time for you to learn the best possible tags and the best possible ways to make your page accessible. These standards are going to come from the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, called WCAG. And these guidelines are printable, not technology based. What this means is that you don't need to go out and find the greatest language or greatest technology to make your page accessible, instead you really just need to follow four principles as you design your sites. Is my site perceivable, is it operable, is it understandable, and is it robust? We'll be talking about these four principles throughout our entire course. So, let's review quickly. I know that right now you're just starting your Web design career, and it can be overwhelming. But I'm really hoping that one of the things you'll make sure that you do is design with accessibility in mind. It is the right thing to do for so many reasons. Whether it's because you really want to reach out to the largest customer base you can, or because legally it's required. The important thing is make sure you do it. And the great thing is accessible design is actually pretty straight forward. All you need to do is adhere to standards. The reason that many pages are inaccessible, is because they're trying to be flashy and cool and do things that aren't quite yet fully implemented to standards. So, finally as we go through this class make sure that you pay special attention to the semantics behind HTML tags. These semantics contain special information that are going to make it much easier for people who are using assistive devices to understand the content of your page. Together we can make sure that the next generation of Web developers are designing for the greatest possible audience.