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Web Accessibility

Online Accessbility


Access to information and electronic technology for persons with disabilities is an essential component of the Texas State University-San Marcos commitment for a barrier free learning environment.  The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and Section 508 of Workforce Investment Act requires public institutions to provide effective communication through all mediums, including the Internet.  The DIR (Department of Information Resources) for the State of Texas has also published "1 TAC ┬ž201.12 State Web Sites", concerning standards for State Web Sites, in the Texas Register.

How to check if your web site is accessible

Web pages need to be validated in order to ensure they meet the minimum requirements for university accessibility.  

WC3 Validation:

This validation tool checks web pages for conformance with HTML standard.  By ensuring compliance with HTML it ensures that browsers read and display web pages as intended and allows assistive technology products to correctly interpret a web site.  

Microsoft's Checklist

  1. Turn off graphics; make sure the ALT text displayed makes the page usable.
  2. Turn off sounds; make sure no important instructions are lost.
  3. Turn off style sheets, in Internet Explorer version 3, to make sure the page is still readable.
  4. Use the High Contrast option in the Accessibility Options section of Control Panel, restart the browser, and make sure the page is still readable.
  5. Use Custom Font Sizes in the Display section of Control Panel.
  6. Use the largest font size supported by the browser (the largest is only available when High Contrast mode is turned on).
  7. Resize the browser window larger and smaller.
  8. Navigate using the keyboard; make sure TAB traverses all links in reasonable order and that CTRL+TAB moves between panes or sections.
  9. Select all text and copy it to the clipboard, ensure it makes sense when pasted into a word processor.
  10. Use Bobby, the analysis tool, to examine your pages.
  11. Use less common browsers that may be used by people with disabilities.

After a web site has met a validation tool it is important to ask others for feedback. It is also important to periodically recheck the site for compliance when changes are made.