Website Automated Accessibility Testing
Princeton is implementing enterprise automated accessibility testing and monitoring, a strategic component of its maturing digital accessibility program. Automated testing and monitoring improves the accessibility of public-facing websites by identifying and supporting remediation of accessibility issues to help websites better meet accessibility, usability, and governance standards. DubBot, the selected platform, adds to Princeton's digital accessibility quality assurance approaches which include just-in-time testing and feedback during content editing, scheduled and by-request manual testing, training for editors, designers, and developers, reviews of vendor offerings as part of the Architecture and Security Review process, and consultations on design concepts, prototypes, and websites under development.
DubBot will report issues to website owners and provide guidance on solving them. It will present a dashboard with scores for accessibility, broken links, spelling, and governance, and provides links to the pages that require attention. It will also allow the University to track progress over time. OIT will provide training and other support services to website owners and editors to introduce them to DubBot, assist them in understanding remediations, and answer their questions.
This project is underway and will run through 2023.
It is important to note that automated testing does not find all accessibility errors. While automated testing is an important tool, Princeton's approach to improving the accessibility of its public-facing websites will continue to include manual testing, accessible website templates, just-in-time feedback, training, and consultation.
Key Websites Testing and Remediation
OIT recently completed an expansive project to improve the accessibility of key student-facing websites. The goal was to identify, test, and address accessibility blockers and improve the usability of websites for people with disabilities. This effort included working with campus and commercial partners to raise awareness, conduct tests, recommend and oversee solutions, and provide training. The project has been a vital component of the digital accessibility program, and helped inform our overall approach to assisting offices and programs across the University to improve the accessibility of their websites. Key sites have now shifted into maintenance mode, where they are regularly tested and staff are supported as they update their websites to ensure new content is accessible.
Examples of the project's impacts on digital accessibility include:
- The re-architecture of the Princeton Site Builder (Drupal) platform so that websites created within it are born accessible
- Updates to CAS, the central authentication service, which is required for access to many University computing and network resources
- The creation of the Jazz design system for application development to ensure components are accessible