Comparing peer accessibility ratings in evaluation (COMPARE)

New: COMPARE launched repository and information and learning module

The COMPARE repository of web content with accessibility evaluations has been launched. Contributors are invited to:

  • add new real life examples (cases) of web content
  • evaluate and comment the cases listed in the repository

Users with disabilities are invited to test the web content cases and add their usability test results. Just go to the COMPARE Contribution page to learn how to participate.

Second, the COMPARE project launched a CONTAO-based information and learning module: Access & Use. It describes the requirements for important interactive components of web design and documents practical problems of users, mostly via annotated screencasts.

About the COMPARE project

The need for an accessible society

Today, access to online information and services has become a critical requirement for successful inclusion in society. But many digital resources are still not accessible to people with disabilities. An aging population means the share of people with disabilities is rising. This, and the digitisation of all parts of society, makes inclusive digital content and services more important than ever.

A new benchmark set by the EU

The EU has recently created a new law that calls for all public web sites and mobile apps across Europe to be accessible for people with disabilities (the Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the accessibility of the websites and mobile applications of public sector bodies , COM/2016/0484 final).

The benchmark for accessibility is set in the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.0) which were developed by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). As part of the new EU law, the adherence of public web sites and apps to WCAG will need to be evaluated in a uniform manner. The EU is will therefore develop a common evaluation method.

This raises the question about the status quo of accessibility evaluation across Europe. What are the actual differences in EU Member states today?

Diverse accessibility evaluation methods across Europe

Most current accessibility evaluation methods are based on WCAG 2.0 conformance level AA. They are usually defined in more detail on a national or organizational level. It is therefore no surprise that across the spectrum of organisations, many differences exist in the way WCAG success criteria are applied to actual web content. This is partly due to the way the common WCAG success criteria are translated into specific technical checkpoints. Another aspect is that evaluation methods may go beyond WCAG 2.0 to include additional accessibility criteria or usability aspects that are important for people with disabilities.

What is the COMPARE project all about?

COMPARE (Comparing peer accessibility ratings in evaluation) is a project that will document and compare differences in current evaluation practices of accessibility experts across Europe. The partners in the EU-funded Erasmus Strategic Partnership are DIAS (DE), Funka (SE) and BrailleNet (FR). The project will set up a Wiki-based repository of web content and associated accessibility ratings to document actual differences. We want to foster a discussion of rating approaches that can contribute to a consensual rating approach. Expert organisations and individuals from other countries are invited to contribute to the repository.

Are you interested?

If you carry out accessibility evaluations and would like to contribute to the COMPARE repository, have a look at the Contribution page. We send login details to anyone who is interested in accessibility and testing according to WCAG - evaluators, developers, but also users with disabilities who would like to contribute usability tests to the web content cases in the repository.

Project details

Compare is a Strategic Partnership project funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Commission.

Project number: 2016-1-DE02-KA202-003453

The COMPARE project has started on 1. January 2017 and will run for two years.

Go to Website of the COMPARE project

Contact

Detlev Fischer
Tel: +49-40 43 18 75 25
Fax: +49-40 43 18 75 45
E-Mail: fischer@dias.de