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Home About Us ICT Accessibility Guidelines Appendix A: Accessibility Checklist

Software description and accessibility checklist.

Person filling out this Checklist:





Fax number:

E-mail address:

Software application under review:




Choose the most appropriate description:

  1. commercial off-the-shelf software (used "as is")
  2. commercial software, but modified for agency use
  3. custom software developed under contract
  4. custom software developed in-house


Choose the most appropriate:

  1. word processor
  2. spreadsheet
  3. database
  4. groupware
  5. e-mail
  6. Internet browser
  7. other Internet access
  8. online database access
  9. other (describe):

Used by approximately ___ members of the public and ___ employees on a weekly basis.

Checklist: Accessibility Details

Category Question Yes No N/A
Keyboard Access 1. Does the software provide keyboard equivalents for all mouse actions, including buttons, scroll windows, text entry fields, and pop-up windows?      
2. Does the program provide clear and precise instructions for use of all keyboard functions as part of the user documentation?      
3. Are instructions regarding keyboard use widely available for all users in your component?      
4. Does the software have a logical tabbing order among fields, text boxes, and focal points?
5. When navigating screens and dialog boxes using the keyboard, does the focus follow a logical tabbing order?
6. Is there a well-defined focal point that moves with keyboard navigation? (e.g., can you use the arrow keys to navigate through a list followed by pressing the Enter key or space bar to select the desired item)?
7. Are shortcut keys provided for all pull-down menus?
8. Does the software support existing accessibility features built into the operating system (e.g., sticky keys, slow keys, repeat keys in Apple Macintosh OS or Microsoft Windows 95)?
Timing 9. If timed responses are present, does the software allow the user to modify the timing parameters of any required timed responses?
Screen Elements 10. Are all descriptions or labels for fields positioned immediately to the left or directly above the control, and do they end in a colon, so that it is easy for screen reading software to associate the labels with the corresponding fields?
11. Does every window, object, and control have a clearly named label?
12. Does the software application use standard controls rather than owner-drawn or custom controls?
Icons 13. Does the software have a user-selectable option to display text on icons, i.e., text-only icons or bubble help?
14. Is the use of icons consistent throughout the application?
15. Are menus with text equivalents provided for all icon functions or icon selections on menu, tool, and format bars?
Sounds 16. If there are audio alerts, are visual cues also provided? Note: Most operating systems handle this issue in the client/server environment; the question is most relevant in a dumb terminal environment.
17. Does the software support the "show sounds" feature where it is built into the operating system?
18. Can the user disable or adjust sound volume?
19. If information is provided in an audio format, is it also capable of being displayed by the user in a visual format?
Display 20. Is the software application free of patterned backgrounds used behind text or important graphics?
21. Can a user override default fonts for printing and text displays?
22. Can a user adjust or disable flashing, rotating, or moving displays?
Color 23. Does the software ensure that color-coding is never used as the only means of conveying information or indicating an action?
24. Does the application support user-defined color settings system-wide?
25. Is highlighting also viewable with inverted colors?
Size 26. If the software application draws its own screen elements, does it pick up the size settings that the user has selected in the Control Panel?
Documentation 27. Are all manuals and documentation provided in electronic format as well as ASCII text files, including text descriptions of any charts, graphs, pictures, or graphics of any nature?
28. Can a user choose to have any report generated by the software made available in a "print to ASCII file" format?
Training 29. Is special training provided for users with disabilities that will enable them to become familiar with the software and learn how to use it in conjunction with assistive technology provided as an accommodation?
30. After you have evaluated this application using the Checklist, test it by running the application with a sampling of the common assistive technologies used by persons with disabilities (including, at a minimum, screen readers, and, if possible, alternate input devices, screen enlargement software, and voice recognition software and devices). Describe the accessibility successes and problems you encountered during these testing exercises, as well as your plans for addressing any problems: [space provided for answer]