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4.3 Web-based Intranet and Internet Information and Applications

The standards are based on the Federal Section 508 Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Standards developed by the Access Board as well as the access guidelines, version 1.0, developed by the Web Accessibility Initiative of the World Wide Web Consortium. These provisions ensure access for people with visual, hearing, motor and cognitive disabilities who rely on various assistive products to access computer-based information, such as screen readers. Screen readers translate the computer screen display into automated audible output and refreshable Braille displays. Certain conventions, such as verbal tags or identification of graphics and format devices, such as frames, are necessary so that these devices can “read” them for the user in a sensible way. The standards do not prohibit the use of Web site graphics or animation. Instead, the standards help ensure that such information is also available in an accessible format. Generally, this means use of text labels or descriptors for graphics and certain format elements. (HTML code already provides an “Alt Text” tag for graphics, which can serve as a verbal descriptor for graphics.) This section also addresses the usability of multimedia presentations, image maps, style sheets, scripting languages, applets and plug-ins, and electronic forms.

The standards apply to state Web sites but not to private sector Web sites (unless a site is provided under contract to a state agency, in which case only that Web site or portion covered by the contract would have to comply).

The following definitions apply to these standards.

  • Flicker. A repeated, rapid or fluctuating variation of brightness, contrast or position on a display.
  • Key pages. Pages that represent the upper portions of a website’s hierarchy with respect to navigation including home pages of major subdivisions of content or services.
  • Meaningful text equivalent. Text that accurately and thoroughly conveys the content of a non-text element.
  • Modification. Alterations or deletions in a web page, document or component, except where the changes are the result of:
    • Automated retrieval of information from a database;
    • Content retrieved, framed or otherwise imported from an external site or web-based service;
    • Replacement of digital publications received from outside sources.

The standards follow:

(a) A meaningful text equivalent for every non-text element shall be provided (e.g., via “alt”, “longdesc”, or in element content) except for captioning of audio information which shall comply with (b) of this section.

(b) Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation.

(c) Web pages shall be designed so that all information conveyed with color is also available without color, for example from context or markup. Ensure that foreground and background color combinations provide sufficient contrast when viewed by someone having color deficits or when viewed on a black and white screen.

(d) Documents shall be organized so that they are readable without requiring an associated style sheet.

(e) Redundant text links shall be provided for each active region of a server-side image map.

(f) Client-side image maps shall be provided instead of server-side image maps except where the regions cannot be defined with an available geometric shape.

(g) Row and column headers shall be identified for data tables.

(h) Markup shall be used to associate data cells and header cells for data tables that have two or more logical levels of row or column headers.

(i) Frames shall be titled with text that facilitates frame identification and navigation.

(j) Pages and elements shall be designed so that screen flicker does not occur between frequencies 2Hz and 55 Hz.

(k) A text-only page, with equivalent information or functionality, shall be provided to make a Web site comply with the provisions of these standards when compliance cannot be accomplished in any other way. The content of the text-only page shall be updated whenever the primary page changes. The non- accessible version must be as accessible as possible.

(l) When pages utilize scripting or other programmatic elements to display content, the information provided by the script shall also be provided in an equivalent text format that can be processed and interpreted by assistive technology. When pages utilize scripting or other programmatic elements to create user interfaces, user interaction shall be input device independent.

(m) When a Web page requires that an applet, plug-in or other application be present on the client system to interpret page content, the page must provide a link to a plug-in or applet that complies with Oklahoma Software Applications and Operating Systems standards (a) through (l).

(n) When electronic forms are designed to be completed on-line, the form shall allow people using assistive technology to access the information, field elements and functionality required for completion and submission of the form, including all directions and cues.

(o) A method shall be provided that permits users to skip repetitive navigation links.

(p) When a timed response is required, the user shall be alerted and given sufficient time to indicate more time is required.

(q) Use valid, industry recognized web programming standards including a document type definition or the equivalent.

(r) Identify the primary natural language of the document.

(s) A link to the agency’s Web site accessibility policy (if existing) and contact information for compliance issues related to the accessibility of electronic and information technology shall be included on home pages and other key pages.

This Information is taken from The full Information Technology Accessibility Standards document can be found in the Information Technology Policy (PDF).