How to Create and Maintain Accessible Media

Why does media need to be accessible?

Media needs to be accessible for a variety of reasons:

  • To ensure equal opportunities for people with disabilities
  • Comply with legal requirements
  • Uphold ethical standards
  • Reach a diverse audience
  • Improve user experiences
  • Enhance search engine visibility

Who needs access to accessible media?

Accessible media is essential for individuals with disabilities, including those with visual, auditory, cognitive, or motor impairments.

Although beyond these categories it benefits a broader audience:

  • The elderly
  • People with temporary disabilities
  • Non-native speakers
  • Those using different devices or environments for accessing content

How can I ensure my media is accessible?

Ensuring your media is accessible requires taking an extra step. And although this sounds like a lot of work, it’s important to remember that people in your audience might require your media to be accessible in order to take it in.

Here are some of the best practices for creating accessible media, and staying on top of your content.

Understand Accessibility Guidelines

Familiarise yourself with accessibility guidelines, such as the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG).

Use Accessible Design Principles

This includes using clear headings, descriptive alt text for images, providing transcripts for multimedia content, and ensuring a logical and easy-to-navigate structure.

Choose Accessible Formats

Use accessible file formats and technologies. For example, use HTML for web content, which is inherently accessible, and ensure that documents are saved in formats that can be easily accessed by screen readers and other assistive technologies.

Provide Alternative Text

Add alternative text to images and multimedia content. This text should describe the content and purpose of the image, ensuring that people with visual impairments can understand it.

Caption and Transcribe Multimedia

This benefits those with hearing impairments and those who prefer to read or search for specific information in the content.

Test with Assistive Technologies

Test your media with various assistive technologies, such as screen readers and voice recognition software.

Offer Keyboard Navigation

Ensure that your media and websites can be navigated using a keyboard alone.

Provide Text Alternatives for Non-Text Content

Any non-text content, such as charts or graphs, should have text alternatives or descriptions to convey the information to those who cannot see the visual representation.

Regularly Update and Maintain your Content

Accessibility is an ongoing process. Continuously review and update your content to ensure it remains accessible as technologies and guidelines evolve.

Educate and Train Staff

If you’re working as part of a team, ensure that you are all educated on accessibility.

Seek User Feedback

Gather feedback from users, including those with disabilities, to identify any accessibility issues and make improvements.

Some Practical Examples of Accessibility

We’ve compiled some great examples of good practice in another blog post. If you’re looking for some practical examples, check out the link below.

BLOG: A guide on how to make your content accessible

A guide on how to make your content accessible


The Digital Accessibility eLearning Course

Our digital Accessibility course is now available. By taking the course, you can earn yourself a certificate.

The Digital Accessibility eLearning course will consider the diverse abilities of members within your organisation and understand how to create accessible create digital content for your website, training materials, manuals and more.

The Digital Accessibility course is classified as quickfire. A shorter-than-usual course, which can be completed in less time than other courses.




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