Accessibility in mind? A nationwide study of K-12 Web sites in the United States

Keywords: accessibility, web development, web design, universal design

Abstract

Web site accessibility is a serious civil rights concern that has historically been difficult to measure and to establish success criteria for. By conducting automated accessibility analyses via the WAVE tool, we calculated accessibility norms of a statistically appropriate, random sample of K–12 school Web sites across the U.S. (n = 6,226) and merged results with national datasets to determine how school demographics influence accessibility. Results indicated that schools across all demographic groups generally struggle to make their Web sites fully accessible to their universe of diverse users and revealed that the concrete, highest-impact steps that schools nationwide need to take to improve accessibility include improving poor contrast between text and backgrounds, providing alternative text to images and other visual elements, and labeling form controls.

Author Biographies

Royce Kimmons, Brigham Young University

Assistant Professor
Brigham Young University
David O. McKay School of Education
Instructional Psychology & Technology

Jared Smith, Utah State University
Associate Director, WebAIM
Published
2019-02-01
How to Cite
Kimmons, R., & Smith, J. (2019). Accessibility in mind? A nationwide study of K-12 Web sites in the United States. First Monday, 24(2). https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v24i2.9183