In 2022, I interviewed four computer users who are blind and use adaptive technologies to access the web.
Reading about how to implement accessibility requirements can be dry work. Learning heading structure may not help a web content author feel the impact of applying that skill. Hearing real users talk about what aspects of accessibility have the biggest impact on them helps close that circle.
“Accessibility is a continuum, it’s not a binary thing where one site is accessible and another is not. It depends on so many factors. It depends on the site itself, how it was designed, it depends on the technology of the user, it depends on the user’s competency with that technology. Very rarely is there a site I would give a one star rating to.” – Al Puzzuoli, Accessibility Support Engineer, TPGI.
I provide synchronous accessibility training for web content authors at individual libraries as well as at the state level.
My Experience Teaching eAccessibility
- Over 10 years, I trained 300+ staff in person from over 150 libraries on eAccessibility.
- In 2015, I added online training.
- Since 2020, my Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Accessibility modules have been experienced by 1,000+ online learners, including international learners.
- In 2022, I began teaching synchronous web accessibility skills at the state level, beginning with the Library of Virginia.
My Knowledge Base
I began writing accessible HTML in 1999 for a nine library network of Braille and Talking Book Libraries under the supervision of staff who used screen readers to access the Internet.
I served as the website administrator for the Library of Michigan for over 20 years. In 2014, they were the first state library agency required to sign a consent decree with the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division after a web accessibility complaint. I have since implemented, enforced, and revisited methods to maintain digital accessibility in a library environment.
In 2020, I introduced a poll of key web accessibility success indicators. The poll was distributed on the Niche Academy platform where the audience is primarily public library staff. Over the next 20 months, 627 respondents reported on their library’s web accessibility practices.
In 2022, I interviewed four assistive technology users on what’s most important to them when accessing a website.
These two data sets demonstrated important markers of web accessibility success in libraries. They also showed that web content authors, and not just administrators, have a short but vital skills list that provide visually impaired site visitors the ability to access information.
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My support for Michigan libraries includes::
When our small public library was hit with an accessibility complaint from the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights, we were scrambling to learn how to respond to the complaint and how to ensure that our website was compliant and accessible to our community. …Keep reading