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Technology Accessibility Guidelines

Purpose

The purpose of these guidelines is to provide the University's information technology resources to the widest range of users, including users with some of the more common sensory, motor and cognitive disabilities.  Loyola Marymount University has created the following guidelines for assisting students, faculty, staff, as well as the general public.

Accessibility Guidelines

Instructional Materials

Instructional Materials (IM) are considered to be forms of communication and should be delivered in a manner that is equally effective for persons with disabilities.  Communication is considered to be equally effective when it is:

* comparable in quality to those received by students without disabilities

* comparable in timelines of delivery and availability

* provided in a manner and medium appropriate to the significance of the message and the abilities of the person receiving the material

Procurement

Loyola Marymount University departments should take appropriate steps to ensure they invest in technologies that are accessible to individuals with disabilities and should not procure products which, in order to comply with future policy, will require modifications or need to be replaced.  Loyola Marymount University should require IT vendors to provide product accessibility information during Request For Proposals (RFPs) and other evaluation processes by submitting a completed Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) developed by the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI).  Because the first phase of policy implementation is likely to focus on software and web applications, those RFPs should require, at a minimum, completion of the appropriate VPAT sections, 1194.21 or 1194.22, as well as 1194.31 and 1194.41.  The VPAT can be downloaded from http://www.itic.org/archives/ITI_VPAT_v1.3.doc.

Web Accessibility

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to the accessibility of the internet and its resources, including websites, web applications, and digital content.  The ubiquity of the Internet in delivering information and providing services is an essential reason to make its accessibility a priority for Loyola Marymount University.  The dynamic nature of the web and the continuous updating of content require a process that can be facilitated by the use of an enterprise-wide web evaluation and monitoring tool along with well-defined campus policy and implementation procedures.

The Web, New Media and Design Office will coordinate the University's efforts to ensure all Loyola Marymount University web pages are compliant with existing Section 508 standards.  The process in which web pages are categorized as being compliant or not compliant in addition to facilitating the remediation process will be defined by the Web, New Media, and Design Office. 

Section 508 Web Standards

All Loyola Marymount University created web sites need to conform to Section 508 Standards for Web-based Intranet and Internet Information and Applications.  This set of standards contains 16 specific points (a) through (p).  Each point is grouped with information describing the item, tips for evaluating, and design tutorials and resources.

(a) A text equivalent for every non-text element shall be provided.

(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 colors is also available without color, for example from content to markup.

(d) Documents shall be organized so 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 shall be designed to avoid causing the screen to flicker with a frequency greater than 2 Hertz (cycles per second) and lower than 55 Hertz.

(k) A text-only page, with equivalent information and 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.

(l) When pages utilize scripting language to display content, or to create interface elements, the information provided by the script shall be identified with functional text that can be read by assistive technology.

(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 section 1194.21(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 or very long lists of links.

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

LMU contacts

Questions regarding services for students with disabilities

Disability Support Services
Daum Hall, Second Floor
310-338-4216

Questions regarding web accessibility

Web, New Media & Design Office
University Hall 2850
310-338-2366


Questions regarding technology accessibility

Information Technology Services
Daum Hall
310-338-1747

External References

U.S. Government Section 504 Portal

The California State University Accessibility Technology Initiative (ATI)

Information Technology Industry Council Voluntary Product Accessibility TemplateTM


The Technology Accessibility Guidelines are also available in a PDF version for download.