UTA is celebrating Accessibility Day!

Colleges and departments are communicating with the campus about the importance of accessibility topics! To join the fun, EIR Accessibility has teamed with Web Hosting Services to bring you ten accessibility tweaks that you can make to your website.

10. Ensure your site’s text is easily readable/scannable.

Here are a few quick readability tips:

  • Avoid long sentence and paragraph structures.
  • Keep things concise with three to five sentences per paragraph.
  • Use bullets or numbering appropriately to better segment information.
  • Use tables for tabular data but not to structure page content.
  • Use images and headers appropriately.

9. Be cautious about using flyers and documents as "content.”

Many University departments create flyers to advertise and convey information. When using flyers on your website, include the flyer content as on-page text that a screen reader can scan.

When attaching a downloadable flyer in addition to the on-page content, use an accessible PDF instead of a jpg or gif.

8. Be sure your site can be navigated via keyboard.

Many assistive technologies like screen readers rely on users to tab through a website using a keyboard. If you cannot tab through each element on a page, you may have an issue with accessibility.

7. Make your links unique, with descriptive names, and that stand out from other text.

  • Make all links clearly distinguishable from the surrounding text. Links should be a different color, underlined, or otherwise set apart.
  • Use text that properly describes where the link will go and be sure to lead with key information about the link. Just as you may scan a page for information, users of screen readers often scan pages for relevant links.
  • Having links that are duplicated, aren’t clear in their meaning, or are frankly using “click here,” are not helpful for someone trying to navigate a page.

Pro Tip: Often, you’ll see a link that reads, “Click here for our flyer” or just “Click here.” A better alternative might be to say, “To find out more about our event, here’s a great flyer you can share with others.”

6. Ensure proper use of page headers in your content.

Screen readers use heading structure to navigate content. Keep the correct order of headings (<h1>, <h2>, etc.) and separate presentation from structure (how things look vs. how things are read/scanned). By using headings correctly and strategically, the content of your website will be well-organized and easily interpreted by screen readers. 

Don’t pick a header just because it looks good visually. This may confuse screen readers. Be sure to use headers in order and style your text with CSS instead.

<h1> Main Heading </h1>

  <h2> Sub Heading </h2>

  <h3> Sub Sub Heading </h3>

<h2> Sub Heading </h2>

<h3> Sub Sub Heading </h3>

<h3> Sub Sub Heading </h3>

  <h4> Sub Sub Sub Heading </h4>

Pro Tip: In the same way, search engines navigate your website via headers. Meeting accessibility needs may help your Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

5. Add transcripts and captions for audio and video content.

Transcripts and captions make audible content accessible to people who can’t hear, and more comprehensible to everyone. Be aware, though, that adding accessibility features to media requires planning and time.

Additionally, transcripts and captions are a great learning aid and can improve comprehension.

Pro tip: Make sure your PowerPoint presentations are correctly captioned and have notes/transcripts available as well.

4. Don’t use “only color” or “only images” to convey information.

Color allows us to express emotions and communicate messages on the web, but don’t use color alone. Content, images, video, all contribute to a user’s experience. Be sure to display your content thoughtfully.

As well, different people have different learning abilities, and the use of color and multimedia ensures that your content will be useful to the widest range of people. If you have some time, check out this lecture by Dr. Kevin Elder. He gives educated advice on what color blindness is and ways you can be more inclusive when using color in your designs. 

3. Use colors carefully.

Some users may have difficulty seeing text if the contrast between colors is low. Use colors that have a high contrast ratio, such as black and white or black and yellow, instead of low contrast combinations like yellow and white.

Check out some quick tips for designing for color blindness by Yellowchalk Design for great examples of why this is so important.

2. Always assign alt tags for images.

You should provide alt text for each image on your site, so that people using screen readers can understand your message and the importance of the images you use.

Keep your alt tags short, direct, but descriptive enough to convey the image. Most alt text should be no more than a few words long, using simple language.

Pro tip: Use alt text for buttons and title text for document links.

1. ... and our top accessibility tweak for your website is... Embrace Siteimprove.

Never assume your website is accessible to all users. UTA provides Siteimprove to assist you in quickly evaluating the overall accessibility of your website.

For additional questions about Siteimprove or accessibility in general, email


Please help us congratulate these departments for having the 5 highest site accessibility scores in Siteimprove:

  • DED – OSHA Safety 100
  • DED – OSHA Safety 100
  • Microsystem Research 100
  • Social Work – Social Connections Conference 99.17
  • Dining – 98.33

These sites earned the top accessibility scores for the quarter ending May 31, 2021. We recognize these departments for ensuring that their websites meet the A and AA WCAG criteria for web accessibility.

All employees have access to Siteimprove. Please contact for more information.

June 10, 2021

If you post on social media accounts for your department, division or the university as a whole, have you ensured that the post is accessible to people with disabilities? Learn more about accessibility on social media by visiting or contact us at

December 23, 2020

Please help us congratulate these departments:

  • OIT ServiceNow Self Service 99.4;
  • Environmental Health and Safety MavSafe 99.4;
  • COLA – Music – All State Choir 99.2;
  • COLA – Music – Texas Conducting Workshop 99.0;
  • COE – Systems Engineering Research Center 98.8

These sites earned the top accessibility scores for the quarter ending August 2020. We want to recognize these departments for ensuring that they are meeting the A/AA Criteria from WCAG for web accessibility.

All UTA employees have access to Siteimprove. Contact for more information regarding how to access reports for your webpage.

September 30, 2020

When planning a meeting or event, make plans to be accessible! The University of Georgia has published an excellent resource covering aspects from registrations to site selections. Please visit their article, Planning Accessible Meetings and Events, for a list of best practices.

September 29, 2020; Note, the link above stopped working. Here is an alternate document from the ADA National Network

Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh have published a Best Practices website for webpage accessibility. Their information on accessible forms is particularly good. Please click through to Carnegie Museum’s Innovation Studio for detailed information.

September 29, 2020

Please help us congratulate these departments!

  • CAPPA – Future Cities 100;
  • OIT ServiceNow Self Service 99.5;
  • Music – All State Choir 99.2;
  • 99.0;
  • Music – TexasConductingWorkshop 99.0

These sites are our top scores for the quarter ending May 2020. We want to recognize these departments for ensuring that they are meeting the A/AA Criteria from WCAG for web accessibility.

All UTA employees have access to Siteimprove. Contact for more information regarding how to access reports for your webpage.

July 10, 2020

With the end of the Qualtrics contract, some webmasters are wondering if they have surveys embedded or linked from their web site that will be broken next week. Siteimprove has a helpful report just for this scenario.

Below is the procedure for employees with access to Siteimprove

  1. Login to MyApps page. Click on the Siteimprove Tile.
  2. If your landing dashboard is the DCI Score Dashboard, click on the dashboard name and select the UTA Siteimprove Dashboard option. If you are already on the UTA Siteimprove Dashboard, proceed to step 3.
  3. From the UTA Siteimprove Dashboard, scroll down the page until you see the section named Qualtrics Links. All URLs with Qualtrics links will be listed.

If this is your first time to log into Siteimprove, this will create your account. In order to access reports for your website, send an email to to let them know which websites you monitor.

You will want to remove the links to Qualtrics or replace with QuestionPro links.

July 8, 2020

Perkins School for the Blind has published an excellent list, “9 Essential Tips for Working with People Who Are Blind“. The author states: “In today’s high-tech workforce, it’s becoming more and more common to work with people who are visually impaired. So following these simple do’s and don’ts is not just good business etiquette – it’s good business.”

In addition to being good for business, it is also in support of UTA’s Principles of Community that all of UTA strives to work well with each other across our populations of students, staff and faculty.

June 25, 2020

Today marks the ninth annual Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD). Visit the GAAD website for more information including:

  • an assessment of the current state of accessibility;
  • most common electronic accessibility failures on homepages;
  • an article addressing how populations are affected by inaccessibility;
  • a discussion of common disabilities/impairments; examples of how accessibility removes barriers;
  • and find ways that you can help.

May 21, 2020

Selecting the proper color palette is an important step in electronic communications. Color palettes must be considered in every use from Adobe Design files to Word files and everything in between. This includes emails, Excel files, Powerpoint files, surveys, registration requests and web pages.

Tableau has published an interesting article that addresses best practices when selecting your color palette in order to ensure that all users with colorblindness can fully perceive the communication.

Those of us at UTA have an additional requirement that our color palette should take into account the University’s color identity policy.

It is interesting that Tableau’s recommended color palette is very similar to the colors listed on UTA’s color identity page. Here are a couple of reminders:

  • When using orange, ensure that you are using the correct orange – RGB# R-245 G -128 B-38. Also, when using orange, it is best to use it against white. It will be very difficult to achieve sufficient color contrast when using orange against creme, light blue or grey.
  • All UTA employees have access to Siteimprove. You can use Siteimprove to test all of your webpages. Contact for more information.
  • When selecting font and background color, there is no “right color”. Your concern is to achieve enough color contrast between the font color, the background color, and the other font colors so that the user can perceive the content.
  • Never use color as a single identifier. For example, if you have a bar graph, each bar should not only have a different color applied but also a different pattern applied.
  • All hyperlinked text should be underlined to indicate that it is a link. Otherwise, you are using color as a single identifier.

While our primary focus here is electronic accessibility, please ensure that your printed materials also follow best practices when selecting your color palette and refrain from using color as a single identifier. If you need assistance, please contact

April 20, 2020

UT Austin issued a news release that has pointers to the National Deaf Center based at UT Austin. This article, “New Online Resources Available for Deaf Student During COVID-19”, offers parents and faculty resources to help them make online learning accessible for hard of hearing and deaf students. We invite you to visit this website and review the resources that include:

  • 7 Tips for College Students to Take Control of Online Learning
  • Remember Accessibility in the Rush to Online Education: 10 Tips for Educators
  • 5 Tips for Disability Service Professionals to Provide Accessibility in Online Classes
  • Checklist for Teaching Deaf Students Online
  • And many more resources.

April 8, 2020

Please help us congratulate these departments!

  • CAPPA – Future Cities 100;
  • OIT ServiceNow Self Service 99.5;
  • Music – All State Choir 99.4;
  • 99.1

These sites are our top scores for the quarter ending February 2020. We want to recognize these departments for ensuring that they are meeting the A/AA Criteria from WCAG for web accessibility.

All UTA employees have access to Siteimprove. Contact for more information regarding how to access reports for your webpage.

March 23, 2020

In April 2019, UTA’s Web Standards Policy and Procedure were adopted. These two documents codified the rules that campus departments should follow when publishing content. Nearly a year later they still form the backbone of big improvements happening across campus. Rules about accessibility compliance are built into those standards. Users trained in Sitecore, Cascade, and WordPress are taught how to test their web sites for accessibly and make improvements.

IT-PO4 – Web Standards Policy

IT-PR4 – Web Standards Procedure

Even though many tools are use and there are many types of web site, web accessibility defines a set of guidelines that all content published on the web should follow.

March 19, 2020

Microsoft recently announced a new Live Captioning feature in Teams. You have to take a moment and marvel at this technology. The ability for the robots to listen to what is being said in realtime and turn it into a coherent stream of nearly grammatically correct text is quite an accomplishment. If you have not tried this out for yourself, I highly recommend turning it on. While in a Teams meeting, click on the ellipsis on the bar and choose “Turn on Live Captions”.

It’s not just for those with hearing impairment. Like most accessibility features, they can make things better for everyone. It is helpful for non-native speakers. It is helpful for people in noisy environments. It can be helpful when the conversation goes into technical jargon. And finally it can be helpful if you just need to temporary mute a teams chat but still keep up with it.

  • KB0011354 Transcription and Live Captions in Microsoft Teams

March 19, 2020