In evaluating the accessibility of each website, the team uses two methods of validation:
- Using Online Automated Validation Tools – The team submits the main page or the entire website to the existing web accessibility validation tools which generates a report card of various accessibility deficiencies, issues or non-compliance. The team also requests the website owner/administrator to do self-evaluation by subjecting their websites to these online tools.
- Using Visual/Manual Validation – The team manually scans the website as well as individual pages linked from the main page.
However, these two methods do not accurately evaluate the site based on each checkpoint listed in Maturity Stages. Recommendations like checking of accuracy of ALT text needs visual comparison from the text to the actual image it describes. This poses a difficulty for the evaluator since online tools do not check whether the content of the ALT text really represents the description of the image. He/she has to manually verify each image that was posted on the site and compare it with its corresponding ALT text.
Therefore, it is important that the team uses both methods in evaluating websites.
Here is the list of checkpoints and the appropriate method of evaluating them:
|Manila ICT/WDAR||Method of Evaluation|
|MS 1 – 1 – Provide an Access Instruction page for visitors explaining the accessibility features of the web site. Put an e-mail hyperlink for visitors to communicate web page accessibility problems.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 1 – 2 – Avoid using words such as "This" or "Click Here" in creating links.
Use descriptive hyperlinks to support text browsers.
|Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 1 – 3 – Attach ALT<alt> (alternative) text to graphic images so that assistive computer technology such as screen readers can reach the content.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 1 – 4 – Provide a "D" hyperlink to a page providing descriptive text of photographs that contribute meaningful content to the page.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 1 – 5 – Provide text transcriptions or descriptions for all audio and video clips.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 1 – 6 – Provide alternative mechanisms for online forms such as e-mail or voice/TTY phone numbers since forms are not supported by all browsers.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 1 – 7 – Avoid access barriers like: PDF files with no equivalent HTML or ASCII files, non-linear page formats, frame formats and content that requires user to download software to access it.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 1 – For ALT texts:
2 – 1.1 – Decorative images must contain null ALT text or ALT="".
2 – 1.2 – Anchor elements within the Image Maps must contain ALT texts.
2 – 1.3 – Alternate texts that require more than 80 characters must instead be changed to "D" hyperlink.
|Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 2 – Provide a Site Map with a link appearing on every page.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 3 – All pages must provide a link back to the home page.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 4 – Use Access keys in creating shortcuts to important links and form
|MS 2 – 5 – Provide a "Skip to Content" link in every page.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 6 – Make the language that you use in your web site easy to understand.||Online Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 7 – Do not use blinking, rolling or scrolling markup tags on your web pages.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 8 – Provide a LABEL text and ALT text on the input elements of your forms.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 9 – Avoid using the FONT SIZE markup in your web pages or change the size to relative units.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 10 – Provide a Search form within your site.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
|MS 2 – 12 – Website content must appear clearly even when colors are turned off.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 2-13 Provide descriptive titles for every page.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 2-15 Provide enough contrast between foreground and background color combinations.||Visual/Manual Evaluation, Online Evaluation|
|MS 2-16 Avoid background sounds or music that may distract the user’s focus on the content.||Visual/Manual Evaluation|
Here is how PWAG evaluates Filipino designed websites for web accessibility compliance. As was mentioned before, this is not final and still subject for revisions.
- A web designer must be a member of Accessibleweb Yahoo Group in order for him to be qualified.
- Beta sites or sites NOT on their official web address will not be recognized.
- He/she can can personally check for his/her website’s compliance by using the PWAG Recommended Visual Validation Checklist.
- He/she may also have his/her site checked first by PWAG Recommended Online Validators to see their code errors and to lessen evaluation work.
- He/she must request for his/her designed site to be evaluated by posting a message entitled “Please Evaluate my Site”. Include the complete URL of the site on the body of the message.
- The web designer can request more than one site to be evaluated. However, only one website will be evaluated at a time.
- As a way of respect, PWAG will NOT evaluate sites that were not requested.
- The PWAG Evaluation Team would then acknowledge the request and post another message announcing to the group that his/her site needs to be evaluated.
- Although each member of the team will have his/her own liberty in the way they evaluate sites, the main criteria would still be the PWAG Web Design Accessibility Recommendations Compliance.
- As each member comments and makes suggestions on the site, the website owner will have an option to follow the suggestion or not. It’s still the web designer’s decision.
- Once he/she complied with the suggestions given by the team, then, the final validation announcement will be announced.
- Each member of the team will post a message voting if the site passed or failed the validation. Please be patient about the time element in evaluating the website. PWAG Team members may probably evaluate sites during their spare time since all of them have their own day (or night) jobs. This is only part of their voluntary service.
- Once the majority of members voted, the announcement will be posted in the e-group.
- His/her site will also be posted in PWAG Official Website and will have a separate permanent link page which includes member’s comments.
- The website owner who passed the evaluation may then be requested to add PWAG link and seal of accessibility logo in their website. This is one way of acknowledging PWAG’s effort of helping the website owner make his/her site accessible.
- By creating an accessible website, the owner automatically becomes a member of Philippine Web Accessibility Group.* He/she is also qualified to receive the “Disabled Friendly Website Awards“. He/she may also be tasked to evaluate other websites in the future.
NOTE: * – This may be changed pending group’s revision of membership criteria.
Here is the current list of PWAG Evaluating Team. It also includes their credentials, workshops attended, specialties and involvement with the sector. The list may increase as the group accelerates its activities.
- Jerry Abordo* – Jerry never attended any of the four web accessibility workshops. But he was able to redesign his websites to comply with PWAG’s recommendations. His website, Bureau of Local Government-DOLE is the second government website that complies with web accessibility and the first in the executive branch. He is also maintaining three more government sites under the Department of Labor and Employment.
- Grace Amberong – Ma’am Grace is one of the pioneers in initiating web accessibility in the Philippines and co-organized the four regional workshops. As head of one of the departments in the National Computer Center, she was among those responsible in drafting policy/memorandums regarding e-commerce and compliance of government websites. Although she is actively involved with the group, Ma’am Grace together with her staff are more focused on monitoring sites of those designers who attended the said workshops.
- Lourdes Borgonia* – Des is one of the resident evaluators who truly represent the user’s point of view. Being impaired visually, she scans sites using the screen reader software and detects even the slightest spelling errors in websites. Aside from being involved in IT since early 2000s, she is also the first blind web designer. She designed the Official Website of ATRIEV. She also represented the Philippines in web page design category during the 2003 International Abilympics Skills Competition held in New Delhi, India. She attended the 1st Regional Web Accessibility Workshop in Tagaytay City.
- Lemuel Cabia* – Lem is one of the most active members of PWAG. As a senior web designer and part of the Web Development Team of Dela Salle University, he has been involved with almost all revisions of the website starting in mid-90s and web accessibility compliance of the current site version. As a technical expert, he also specializes in Cascading Style Sheets, multimedia design and web standards. He has attended the interface workshop on accessible ICT last 2006 and since then, became an active member of PWAG core group.
- Carlo Costales* – Carlo replaced Dollie Villacorte as web designer of House of Representatives website. As one of the first participants during the 1st regional workshop, Dollie has taught him everything she learned. Carlo has since maintained the accessibility compliance of the website and has attended the interface workshop on accessible ICT in 2006. He will surely be our strong voice in lobbying for the inclusion of web accessibility in pending laws.
- Arielle Cruz* – Ariel is the first PWAG member who is a freelance web designer. He was invited by PWAG through w3csites.com website being listed as one of Filipino web designers complying with web standards. He has never attended any government-sponsored workshops. But he was able to design his website to conform with PWAG’s Recommendations. He specializes in web standards, web programming, multimedia design and of course web accessibility. He is an active member of the evaluating team.
- Raoul Diez* – Raoul is our resident evaluator from Cebu City. Even before web accessibility was introduced in the Philippines, he has already dabbled with it and took it into consideration when designing websites. The Cebu Doctors’ University Official Website which he designed has already passed accessibility requirements long before the country held its first workshop. He specializes in Cascading Style Sheets in all rendering including handheld devices, web programming and multimedia design.
- Jojo Esposa Jr.* – Jojo is also one of the pioneers in initiating web accessibility in the Philippines. After representing MCCID in the drafting of Manila Accessible ICT Design Recommendations in 2003, he was one of the first participants during the 1st regional workshop in 2004. As part of the persons with disabilities sector, he actively participated in activites that bridge the gap between the handicapped and the society. He is a registered sign language interpreter. Jojo is also a member of international Guild of Accessible Web Designers.
- Rey Mendoza Jr. – Rey is also one of the first participants during the first regional workshop in 2004. During that time, he represented Dela Salle University being an official of its Web Development Team. He specializes in Cascading Style Sheets and multimedia designs. After a short stay as a consultant in University of Sto. Tomas Web Team, he is now connected with Navitaire, Inc., a division of Accentures. He has been invited as speaker in various web and multimedia design related seminar/workshops.
- Rene Orense – Rene is also a resident evaluator who represents the user’s perspective. He is partially blind. He can only see things that are very near his eyes. He can distinguish colors although color contrasts are very useful to him. He is one of the staff and instructor of ATRIEV. He has attended the first regional workshop in 2004 and the interface workshop in Cebu City in 2006.
- Ervin Reyes* – Ervin is another evaluator representing the disabled group. He became deaf since birth. He has been into web designing and specializes in flash animation and actionscripts. He won the bronze medal in web page design category during the 6th International Abilympics Skills Competition held at New Delhi, India participated in by 33 countries. He is the Deaf Coordinator and Computer Instructor of MCCID since 1993. He attended the 1st regional workshop in 2004.
- Sonny Villafania* – Sonny is another example of a web designer who were not able to attend any workshops yet was able to comply with web accessibility standards. He is the head of the Web Development Team of all the companies owned Dr. Jose Campos and all of them passed PWAG’s Web Design Accessibility Recommendations. Sonny is also multitalented. Aside from web designing, he is also skilled in poetry. Some of his works have appeared in local and international publications. Visit his site at www.dalityapi.com.
- Mel Pedley – Eventhough Mel is a British citizen, she participates in evaluating websites. She is one of the administrators of Guild of Accessible Web Designers. She is also one of the members of Team Access who awards accessible yet awesome designs. She also has her own web design company www.blackwidows.co.uk that specializes in accessibile and standards compliant designs. She is also one of the ever ready helpline and a proudly adopted Filipina by the Philippine Web Accessibility Group.
NOTE: * – Recipients of the Disabled Friendly Website Awards given by NCDA, NCC, DSWD and Vision Office