I have been assigned to do an Accessibility evaluation of a software tool based on section 508 ( Amendment to the Rehabilitation Act). Can anybody provide any good sources where I can find out more about Accessibility and Evaluation and other academic material explaining good design principles according to 508 standards.

A big thank you.

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I believe that the Australian government has adopted a more rigorous approach for all federal websites to conform with WCAG2.0 requirements compared to the US, unless there section 508 is just part of a bigger legislative framework. The strategy taken by the Australian government departments are described here: http://webguide.gov.au/accessibility-usability/accessibility/

A list of comformance testing tools and evaluation templates have been provided here: http://webguide.gov.au/accessibility-usability/accessibility/conformance-testing/#Selection

Some of the tools listed include:

  • Code inspection and validation tools
  • Colour contrast analysers
  • Assistive technologies (ATs) or AT emulators

I think the W3C website is a good starting point to match good design principles to standards that you need to comply with under the WCAG 2.0 guidelines: http://www.w3.org/WAI/users/Overview.html

The website includes information on:

  • How People with Disabilities Use the Web
  • Web Accessibility and Older People
  • Developing Websites for Older People
  • Mobile Accessibility
  • Web Content Accessibility and Mobile Web

There is a lot of information to go through, so you might just need to take some time to work out the level of compliance you need to meet and go from there.

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