Web Accessibility Policy

Marist College is committed to ensuring equal access for people with disabilities. As such, accessibility of the Web is of critical importance to people with disabilities around the world, including people with auditory, cognitive, physical, neurological, and visual disabilities, and is likewise important to those with accessibility needs due to aging.

Providing accessible web content can also benefit people who do not have disabilities but who are experiencing situational barriers. For instance, when accessing the Web from devices with small screens or in low bandwidth situations, or when experiencing barriers due to language or literacy levels, accessibility solutions can also support improved access.

Policy Statement

All new and redesigned web content published after the effective date of this policy by Marist College, both for public and internal websites and services, will conform to WCAG 2.0 Level AA success criteria.

All existing web content published prior to the effective date of this policy will either be archived or modified to conform to WCAG 2.0 Level AA success criteria. Web content hosted on Marist College public websites will be addressed no later than August, 2019. Web content hosted on internal websites will be addressed no later than September, 2019.

All internal content management systems (CMS) and the web content authoring tools will conform to ATAG Level AA success criteria by January, 2020. Where websites, services, or applications provide users with the opportunity to generate content, the interfaces provided will conform to ATAG Level AA.

Responsibilities

The responsibility for the support and implementation of this policy has been split into two functional areas.

Accessibility Coordinator:

  1. Consolidate annual status reports for presentation to the board at annual review meetings.
  2. Prepare and provide accessibility training and guidance
  3. Promote web accessibility awareness internally
  4. Respond to user inquiries related to web accessibility
  5. Organize on-going assessment of the accessibility of websites, content, services and applications identified as in scope.

Information Technology Division

  1. Choose and implement tools that conform to this policy
  2. Provide tools to support in automated accessibility checking
  3. Remedy identified accessibility barriers related to supported technology and applications

Exclusions

Web content that has been archived is not subject to the standards referenced in this policy. Should there be a specific request for access to the archived content by any individual with a disability, that content will be made available in a suitable format within 10 business days. Where it is not technically possible to make the content available, a suitable alternative should be agreed upon with the individual. The department or team responsible for the creation of the content is responsible for making it accessible.

Procurement

This policy applies to all web content developed by or for Marist College and should be referenceds within any contract of services or statements of work for web content, websites, services, or applications. Any such contract or statement of work musth include a provision for an independent statement of conformance stating that the work meets the required standard. This should form part of the deliverable approval process.

Syndicated Content

Elements of Marist College website might include web content syndicated from other providers. For example, a social media stream. When considering a syndication service for inclusion in any Marist College website, any service review should include an evaluation of the accessibility of the service. Such evaluations must form a part of the service selection criteria.

Where a service is selected with known accessibility issues, Marist College will develop or procure a solution that ensures the content delivered via Marist College websites meets policy standards.

Reporting

Each department with responsibility for web content, websites, services, or applications must submit an annual status report to the Accessibility Coordinator. The status report will summarize the efforts and progress towards the aims defined by this policy.

Policy Review

This policy shall be reviewed at least once a year by the Accessibility Coordinator. The review should include input from the Information Technology and Human Resources divisions.

Contacts

Accessibility Coordinator: Accommodations & Accessibility, 845.575.3274, accommodations@marist.edu

References

W3C WCAG 2.0: http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20/
W3C ATAG 2.0: http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20/
W3C UAAG 2.0: http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20/

Definitions

Authoring Tool: Includes WY?SIWYG web page editing tools, content management tools, development tool for portlet, scripts, or applications, non-text media (e.g. video, audio, images) editing tools, social media content authoring tools (e.g. blogs, wiki, social networks)

Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG): Accessibility requirements for web authoring tools, including software and services that are used to produce web content, for example HTML editors, content management systems (CMS), or online forums. ATAG guidelines outline both how to make the tools accessible and also how the tools can be built to help create more accessible content

Internal Website: Website developed or procured to meet an internal Marist College business need, such as student and faculty communication. Access to such sites is only available to Marist College students, faculty and staff.

Public Website: Website developed or procured to support or inform Marist College’s public and prospective community.

User Agent: Includes browsers, media players and applications that render web content

User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG): Accessibility requirements for web browsers, media players, and some assistive technologies that process and present web content to users.

Web Content: Includes electronic documents, websites, services, and applications delivered via the web.

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0: Accessibility requirements for web content, including text, images, audio-visual materials, and code used for structure, style, and interactions.

Website: Includes websites, services, and applications create using Open Web Platform technologies. Note this includes web applications developed solely for mobile platform delivery.