These guidelines provide resources for University staff and faculty to help ensure that information technology (IT) products and services they purchase or procure for the University meet accessibility standards.
When a prospective IT product is to be broadly used by students, staff, or the public to carry out or participate in the the University’s core educational and administrative activities, the product should be accessible to users with disabilities. University faculty or staff involved in acquiring IT products and services should request proof of accessibility from a prospective vendor during new acquisitions and during contract renewals with current vendors.
Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT)
The University relies on the guidance provided by the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT®) for a detailed report of the accessibility of a product or service. Ask vendors to provide an Accessibility Conformance Report (ACR) in the most current VPAT® format as proof of their product or service’s accessibility support. The VPAT® template should be filled out in its entirety and include testing methodology, conformance level, and detailed remarks for any partially-supported or non-supported level per the success criteria of WCAG 2.0 AA.
The University expects vendors to follow the best practice for product testing by having their products tested by an industry recognized accessibility testing organization.
Product Accessibility Road Map
For any WCAG 2.0 AA success criteria which the product or service either only partially meets, or does not meet, the vendor should provide a road map documenting the expected timeframe and release cycle that will resolve each accessibility issue. The road map should be structured to match the findings and detailed remarks of the accessibility test. Each issue to be remediated should indicate a date by which it will be fixed.
Departments should ensure the contract requires the vendor to commit to the accessibility roadmap and follow up with the vendor on a regular basis.
At its discretion, the University may request a product demonstration of the accessibility support features of a given IT product or service. The vendor should be prepared to create a test account and provide a tour of the accessibility features (demonstrating both keyboard support and screen reader support) of their product via a web conference or in-person meeting.