Web accessibility testing is highly reliant on human judgment. Not only that, but it requires a significant understanding of both web technologies and assistive technologies. This makes automated testing and testing by people lacking these skills challenging. The Auto WCAG Rules community group believes that by taking on these challenges we can enable developers to solve parts of the accessibility questions, before ever involving accessibility experts. This means problems can be caught earlier in the development and accessibility experts can use their time more efficiently. Both of which will lead to more accessible products.
What We Do
The objective of this community is to create and maintain rules to test WCAG, that can be used to test and monitor web accessibility in a scalable manner. These rules will be either automated, or semi-automated, in which tools assist non-expert users to evaluate web accessibility. The rules consist of small, atomic test steps that look if specific elements on a web page meet WCAG 2 success criteria.
Each rule has a certain applicability, targeting one ‘type’ of content on a web page. This piece of content is then tested against a series of automatic or manual expectations. For each applicable element a rule will indicate if it passed of failed.
By comparing the test results with results from expert accessibility evaluators, we aim to track the accuracy of the tests we’ve developed. This allows us for an iterative improvement and adjustment of the tests as web development practices change and evolve.
A list of published rules is available on the rules page.