What is Accessibility Testing?
Accessibility testing is a portion of software testing that is done to make sure the program is useful for individuals who are older, have color blindness, hearing loss, or belong to other disadvantaged groups. It falls under the umbrella of usability testing.
With the help of assistive technology, people with disabilities can operate software products more easily.
Some software examples are:
- The software for speech analysis transforms spoken words into text so that the computer can use them as input.
- The text that is shown on the screen can be read aloud using screen reader software.
- Users with vision impairments can read more comfortably thanks to screen magnification software, which enlarges the monitor.
- Specifically designed keyboard for people with motor control issues to facilitate simple typing
Accessibility Testing: Why Do It?
The first reason is to target the disabled market.
Assessing accessibility: What is it?
Disability concerns affect about 20% of the population.
- Severe disabilities affect one in ten persons.
- Among those over 65, one in two have lost their ability.
- Being blind, deaf, crippled, or suffering from any physical ailment are examples of disabilities.
When software is made accessible to people with disabilities, it can meet the needs of this large market. The inclusion of accessibility testing in the standard software testing life cycle can help address accessibility concerns in software.
Follow accessibility laws as a second reason.
Checking for accessibility: What is it?
Legislation mandating that IT goods be usable by those with disabilities has been released by governments across the globe.
These legal actions by different governments are listed below:
- Act of 1990 (Americans with Disabilities Act)
- The Disability Discrimination Act of 1995 was passed in Canada.
- 1992’s Disability Discrimination Act, Australia
- Rehabilitation Act of 2005 in Ireland
- For legal compliance to be ensured, accessibility testing is crucial.
Avoid Possible Lawsuits for Reason Three
Fortune 500 corporations have faced lawsuits in the past because of non-disable-friendly items. Here are a few well-known instances.
- Amazon v. National Federation for the Blind (NFB) (2007)
- Target v. Sexton and NFB (2007)
- Settlement of NFB v. AOL (1999)
It is advisable to design items that assist the disabled and steer clear of possible legal issues.
Which Disabilities to Support?
People with disabilities such as – must be supported by an application.
How Can Accessibility Testing Be Done?
Two methods are available to perform accessibility testing:
Due to their lack of experience with disabilities, testers may find manual automated accessibility testing difficult. Understanding the challenges faced by disabled individuals with unique requirements is preferable.
Based on the type of disability, there are various approaches to testing accessibility. We’ll examine each one individually.
1) Vision Disability
Alright, let’s believe that I am not able to see. XYZ Website is accessible to me despite my total blindness. Then, what is the course of action? The XYZ website is unavailable to me. What’s my current course of action? An option known as SCREENREADER is available in a single word. It’s correct, you say. SCREENREADER. Can anyone explain what this screen reader is? It’s a piece of software that offers online content narration. The material, links, radio buttons, images, videos, and so on that are present on your website. I will have everything read out to me by a screen reader. Multiple Screen Readers are accessible. My experience with jaws is yes.
The entire information will essentially be read out to you when you launch Jaws or any other screen reader and visit the page. For example, when I launch Jaws and the browser, JAWS will state that Mozilla Firefox is now loading. If I navigate to the address bar, JAWS will state that the ADDRESS BAR is now open. If I input www.google.com into the address bar, Jaws will provide an explanation along these lines:
My goal is to clarify that whether you type something into the text box or enter anything else, the screen reader will read it aloud, word for word. In the same way, the pronunciation of link will be as link and button will be button if there is a link. to make objects clearly recognizable to the blind.
Now A website may not be able to narrate accurate content if it is badly designed and constructed, which leads to inaccessibility for blind people. This is a possibility that usually occurs. Should that be the case, Website Business would suffer a significant loss.
2) Visual Impairment
Under “visual impairment,” there are two areas that I would like to bring up.
Color blindness is the first one. While not totally blind, color blindness refers to an inability to see certain colors correctly. The common hues that persons with color blindness are unable to see effectively are red and blue. This means that if I want to utilize a website that is 80% red and I actually am color blind, what should I do? On that website, would I feel at ease? No, is the response.
Therefore, it should be possible for someone who is color-blind to view a website without any difficulty.
Consider the straightforward illustration of a red button. if it is outlined in black, to make it readable. That makes it simple to obtain. Generally speaking, black and white are regarded as universal.
3) POOR VISION DISABILITY
Secondly, someone who is unable to view clearly or who has various vision issues (many of which are connected to the retina, etc.) should not be able to access any website.
- It is advised to steer clear of little print in such situations. thus it would be quite beneficial for those with low vision.
- In addition, individuals with visual impairments might prefer the ability to enlarge text on websites for increased comfort. Therefore, while designing a website, it should be made such that when the text is zoomed in, the layout does not break. It won’t leave a positive impression on them otherwise.
4) Other Disability
One of the most important things to take into account when doing accessibility testing for a disabled population is using a website without a mouse. All of the controls on the website, including the buttons, radio buttons, checkboxes, pop-ups, dropdown menus, and links, should be fully accessible and keyboard-operable.
Accessibility Testing Example Test Cases
In order for all users to use the program, the points listed below must be verified. Validating accessibility testing is done using this checklist.
- Is it the case that every mouse operation and window has a keyboard equivalent?
- What kind of user manual or paperwork contains the instructions? Regarding the application, is it simple to use the documentation to learn and operate?
- To guarantee easy navigation, are the tabs arranged logically?
- If so, are there menu shortcut keys available?
- Do all operating systems support the application?
- Do End Users know how long they will have to wait if the response time of each screen or page is made clear?
- Can you confirm that every label in the application is written correctly?
- Is there an option for all users to change the application’s color?
- To ensure that end users can understand it readily, are icons or images used appropriately?
- Do audio alerts come with an application?
- Are the controls for audio and video possible to be adjusted by the user?
- For printing and text displays, is it possible for a user to change the preset fonts?
- Can flashing, rotating, or moving displays be disabled or adjusted by the user?
- Verify that info is never conveyed or action is ever indicated only by the use of color coding.
- When colors are reversed, can one see the highlighting? Using a variable contrast ratio, the program tested color
- To what extent do persons with disabilities have access to content linked to audio and video? Examine every website’s multimedia page that lacks speakers.
- Does the program or application offer specialized training to help users with disabilities grow comfortable with it?
Best 10 Accessibility Testing Tools
Axe, developed by Deque Systems, is a powerful accessibility testing tool available as a browser extension, a command-line tool, and an API. It can identify accessibility issues in real time while developers and testers navigate through a website or application. Axe provides comprehensive reports with actionable insights, allowing teams to prioritize and fix the most critical accessibility issues effectively.
- WebAIM WAVE:
WebAIM WAVE (Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool) is a user-friendly browser extension that quickly identifies accessibility errors on web pages. It generates detailed reports with easy-to-understand icons and indicators, making it suitable for both beginners and experts. WAVE also offers color contrast analysis, outlining potential issues related to text visibility.
AChecker is an online accessibility evaluation tool that supports various guidelines, including WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) and Section 508. It allows users to test individual web pages or complete websites by entering the URL or uploading a file. The tool generates comprehensive reports and provides guidance on how to fix identified issues.
Pa11y is an open-source, command-line accessibility testing tool designed for developers and testers who prefer automation. It can be integrated into the CI/CD pipeline, enabling continuous accessibility testing during the development process. Pa11y supports multiple standards, including WCAG 2.0 and WCAG 2.1, making it a versatile choice for large-scale projects.
Lighthouse is an accessibility testing tool integrated into the Google Chrome Developer Tools. It not only evaluates web page accessibility but also assesses web performance, SEO, and best practices. Lighthouse provides instant feedback and prioritizes the detected issues to help developers improve the overall website quality.
Tenon is a cloud-based accessibility testing tool that offers a robust API for seamless integration with existing development and testing workflows. With its powerful scanning capabilities, Tenon can assess websites, single-page applications, and even password-protected content. The tool’s detailed reports and alerts help teams collaborate on resolving accessibility issues efficiently.
SortSite is a comprehensive web accessibility and quality testing tool developed by PowerMapper. It covers a wide range of checks, including accessibility, broken links, browser compatibility, and more. SortSite generates detailed reports, complete with prioritized recommendations, enabling teams to address multiple issues simultaneously.
- Accessibility Insights:
Accessibility Insights, developed by Microsoft, offers a suite of tools designed to assist developers and testers in building accessible web applications. It integrates with popular browsers, making it easy to find and resolve accessibility barriers. Additionally, it provides guidance for manual testing and supports Windows, Mac, and Linux environments.
- WAVE Evaluation Tool by WebAIM:
Apart from the WAVE browser extension, WebAIM also offers the WAVE Evaluation Tool, a web-based accessibility checker. It allows users to test web pages in bulk and generates summary reports with color-coded indicators for accessibility errors. This tool is useful for webmasters and testers managing multiple websites simultaneously.
Software engineering uses accessibility testing to make applications user-friendly for people with disabilities. Should the complicated nature of your online application prevent you from adhering to accessibility rules, create a separate version of the website for normal users and one for those with disabilities.
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