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Podcast #32: Testing for Web Accessibility

All about testing for web accessibility — the tools, methods, hows and whys.
Download Episode 32 (Testing for Web Accessibility)
[Transcript for Web Axe 32]



  • (Generally) Follow guidelines by WCAG, WebAIM, Accessify, this podcast
  • Follow any guidelines required by law (ADA, Section 508, DDA [UK])
  • Ensure multimedia and PDF are accessible
  • Use web standards
  • What CANNOT be tested by most automated tools:
    • Color contrast
    • Simple language
    • Tab order (tabindex) [tabindex no longer recommended]


  • Automated tools
  • Review site with keyboard only
  • Review site with screenreader, if available
  • Have impaired users test your site
  • Headings used appropriately


Cynthia Says
  • by HiSoftware
  • Returns long table, listed by checkpoint, if web page passed that checkpoint or not
  • Select WCAG levels or Section 508
  • Included in Firefox Developer Toolbar
  • Adaptive Technology Resource Centre, University of Toronto
  • Computer application–Windows only
  • Performs automatic repairs
  • Select WCAG levels or Section 508
Watchfire WebXACT
  • Used to be known as Bobby
  • Besides accessibility checks, it gives:
    • Page download size
    • Metadata summary
    • Broken links
    • Browser compatibility
Firefox Web Developer Toolbar
  • turn on/off CSS
  • validate XHTML and CSS
  • disable javascript
  • hide images, display alt tags
  • resize browser
  • edit CSS
  • much, much more!
Accessibility Toolbar
  • IE only
  • validate XHTML and CSS
  • resize browser
  • toggle javascript, images/alt
  • heading structure
WAVE from WebAIM
Lynx viewer
  • by Yellowpipe Internet Services
  • Just enter URL and give your Lynx text-only rendering
  • Also can download and install Lynx application
  • “User Mode” with text browser emulator and more
  • Easily turn off images
  • Screen sizing
Firefox Speech Browser Extensions
Mobile Web Emulators

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