Introduction to Web Accessibility

The power of the Web is in its universality.
Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.

Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web

What is Web Accessibility?

Web accessibility refers to the inclusive practice of making websites usable by people of all abilities and disabilities. When sites are correctly designed, developed and edited, all users can have equal access to information and functionality.

Web accessibility, Wikipedia, available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_accessibility

The Web is fundamentally designed to work for all people, whatever their hardware, software, language, culture, location, or physical or mental ability. When the Web meets this goal, it is accessible to people with a diverse range of hearing, movement, sight, and cognitive ability.

Accessibility, W3C, available at: http://www.w3.org/standards/webdesign/accessibility

Web accessibility means that people with disabilities can use the Web. More specifically, Web accessibility means that people with disabilities can perceive, understand, navigate, and interact with the Web, and that they can contribute to the Web. Web accessibility also benefits others, including older people with changing abilities due to ageing.

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Web accessibility also benefits people without disabilities. For example, a key principle of Web accessibility is designing Web sites and software that are flexible to meet different user needs, preferences, and situations. This flexibility also benefits people without disabilities in certain situations, such as people using a slow Internet connection, people with "temporary disabilities" such as a broken arm, and people with changing abilities due to aging.

Introduction to Web Accessibility, W3C, available at: http://www.w3.org/WAI/intro/accessibility.php