Resources for Accessibility in the Digital Humanities

The following resources are intended to help you navigate accessibility as it relates to projects in the Digital Humanities. 

This page will continue to grow—please contact me with any resources you think should be added!

AAR/SBL 2019 Presentation: Accessibility in the Digital Humanities (Keynote)

AAR/SBL 2019 Presentation: Accessibility in the Digital Humanities (PDF)

Theory and Principles

For Web Accessibility in General

Web Accessibility In Mind (WebAIM) is a non-profit organization associated with the Center for Persons with Disabilities at Utah State University. They offer consulting and testing services, resources, and many clear and informative articles on accessibility.

The American Foundation for the Blind offers a similar array of educational and evaluation resources.

Deque Systems is a for-profit company that offers free and paid resources, tools, and testing for accessible design, development, and compliance. See especially their blog posts on Accessibility Best Practices.

For the Digital Humanities

Williams, George H. “Disability, Universal Design, and the Digital Humanities.” Chapter 12 in Debates in the Digital Humanities. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 2012. (full text online)

Accessibility of Biblical Texts and Languages

Night-Light is a site administered by Dr. Sarah Blake-LaRose, which offers information on accessing biblical and other ancient texts for those who are blind. For universities and seminaries, she also offers high-quality Braille transcription services specializing in the multilingual resources used in academic biblical studies.

Accessibility Testing Tools

Automated Web Accessibility Checkers

 Automated accessibility Checkers can be used as a first step in assessing and resolving accessibility blockers and issues with your web 

Accessibility Insights (Chrome Extension)

Axe is a browser extension from Deque Systems

Accessibility Checklists

The following checklists can be used to guide human accessibility testing. 

WCAG 2.0 Web Accessibility Checklist (from WebAIM). Assesses compliance with current standards set out by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) in their W3C Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.1).

Section 508 Web Accessibility Checklist (from WebAIM). Checklist for compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. It is usually better to use the WCAG Checklist above. 

MS Word and PowerPoint Accessibility Checklist (from WebAIM).

Examples of Accessible DH Projects

Sefaria, the living library of Jewish texts, allows access to a multitude of Jewish texts in Hebrew, Aramaic, and English. Their efforts to make the site more accessible are described in blog posts from the  beginning and end of the process.

The Helen Keller Archive. Development of the Helen Keller Archive was done with the access needs of blind, d/Deaf, and deafblind users at the top of mind. You can read Veridian Software’s description of its accessibility efforts here.

The Law

For wonks: Accessibility Laws (organized by nation)

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