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Form checkboxes and accessibility - Comments

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Form checkboxes and accessibility

Posted 25 August 2014, 11:52 AM

I got a good question by Raywonder over Twitter. Raywonder is a long-term user who uses a screen-reader to maintain his ocPortal sites.

He enquired if we could have a standard whereby checkboxes always precede checkbox labels. Screen-readers should be able to identify the association by way of the label relationship, but the reality is screen-readers aren't nearly as good as they should be – the…

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Accessibility within tables with table form field layouts


My thoughts on this to add

My explination on to what Chris's said
Hello all, Dominique, or @raywonder here. This is just a quick post to just say that I found this all out by using arrow keys within the table with ALT+CTRL+Arrow navigation keys, e.g:

And Right

keys for navigation when in a table; a useful way to try is in a Forum, e.g the main front page of the forum root of you're  Ocportal based site.
Most site's I've seen have the checkboxes/tickboxes, (whatever you want to call them) on the far left of the table, say of 5 columbs. Another good example is the Gmail website when you're loged in and are using Basic HTML and in Inbox, Drafs, Trash, etc.
It is used in Ocportal when in the main portion of a Personal Topic (pt) though when viewing messages, wich is nice. When viewing the forums you have, say Genral, Website comment topics and others, but are not actually in the forums, it is not however.
Just to give other users a good understanding of what we're talking about here.

Ocportal is a great CMS to use for site building a very complex site on/with, even if it's jus the platform you use and you gut it and put in what you want/custom thieming/coding and I always have and still do recommend it to others who wish to get a site up and running of there own.
It's accessible out of the box because of what the Ocproducts team does behind the seens, and they really do listen to what us users suggest when they can and implament the changes/suggestions when time permits.
I don't do any extra coding or anything like that because I don't know how, but I know of peoople that do or know how to do sed things, but I still get what I need to get done with what I'm provided with, and for now it's what I am happy with.
Ah, so actually I misinterpreted your point a bit. I see now the checkboxes you're referring to.

Hopefully the other change I did makes sense too though, lol.

This is a bit tricker. gmail is just a personal inbox, while the personal topics forum is a kind of forum. For regular forums we'd expect the checkboxes on the right, as they're not so usual to use. And we'd want the personal topics forum to be consistent because it's the same code.

If anyone has any further views on it, please chime in.
If you don't want to move all the check boxes to the left, then maybe have conditional layouts in the templates.

The layout can be chosen based on a global accessibility flag, and/or a user accessibility preference.

While not ideal because you effectively have UI branching and therefore more thing that need to be tested and can go wrong,it may not be an entirely impractical solution.

Thanks for raising this Chris as I am just about to commence raising a contract for a NSW Government web site development and a memo from the Premier reads:

Agencies are to undertake an immediate and ongoing review of their existing website portfolio; closing sites that are no longer required
Departments and Agencies are to streamline their websites to focus on customer needs, including meeting mandated accessibility requirements

It goes on to say :
NSW 2021 emphasises the need to communicate with customers, particularly online. With digital communication forming a major channel between government and the community, itā€™s vital that each cluster has a strategy that includes the efficient and effective use of online channels.

To improve the quality of NSW Government websites, agencies are required to review their existing website portfolio. Sites identified as being superfluous to agency core business should be consolidated or removed. It is anticipated that a reduction in the number of websites will deliver significant long-term cost savings to agencies; and most importantly, allow more effective communication between government and the community.

<b>As part of the review process, agencies are reminded that all NSW Government websites are required to conform to the World Wide Web Consortiumā€™s (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.

WCAG 2.0 Level A compliance is required by 31 December 2012; and Level AA by 31 December 2014.</b>

Directors General and Chief Executives are responsible for ensuring that websites meet these new accessibility standards. It is likely that agencies will incur a cost to bring sites up to the required accessibility level. This provides further incentive to evaluate the number and purpose of agency websites, and consolidate where possible.

I thought I would bring to your attention the standard that NSW Government will be trying to achieve. I am informed by IT that this is going to be particularly difficult as PDF files for example do not conform to readability standards. It seems to be a very difficult area to get a common standard in and costs development time which ends up as costing real dollars.

What I am really getting at is it seems this is a mammoth task, that costs a lot of time in development and therefore burdens some clients with large expenditure to get there.

Good on you for looking at all of this complexity as part of the developer standard.

It makes sense to me and anything that can help more people get more out of ocPortal the better :)

Here are some quite reasonable web tools that we have used for web accessibility testing. They may be worth while adding to your list of tools.

IDI Web Accessibility Checker : Web Accessibility Checker

WAVE Web Accessibility Tool

WebAIM: Color Contrast Checker

We actually have extensive AAA WCAG/WCAG 2 testing rules built into our release process :). For quite some time now.

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