Many people know that to test in accordance with the most well-established digital accessibility standards, we test against the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 Levels A and AA, and the Web Accessibility Initiative – Accessible Rich Internet Applications (WAI-ARIA 1.0). Certainly, what we test for is critical, as the standards provide the principles and guidelines to help determine the accessibility of a website or app. But how do we test? Is all accessibility testing the same?
Here’s a peek into our four-point hybrid testing, which we believe provides the best path to achieving, maintaining, and proving digital compliance.
Our comprehensive testing combines the best of human and artificial intelligence
- First, we perform automated testing on our powerful a11y® analysis platform which scans a website for accessibility compliance. It’s really smart and really fast, and it checks a site against hundreds of carefully-crafted rules. It’s programmed to break down applicable WCAG 2.1 A/AA guidelines and checkpoints into testable components. Issues and recommendations are logged, and the feedback generated includes specific suggestions to fix accessibility violations. Learn more about a11y® analysis
- Next, a manual tester with a visual disability will use assistive technology to thoroughly examine the content and accessibility of each page in scope, as well as the functionality of each custom use case assigned. Our manual testers are required to be certified in JAWS and NVDA (popular screen readers) and have five or more years of experience in accessibility testing. As native assistive technology users, they provide guidance and insight that can’t be duplicated by a machine.
- Then, a fully-sighted subject matter expert (SME) will review and validate each outcome and perform a complete second round of testing. Our SMEs are uniquely qualified with extensive accessibility, assistive technology, and business knowledge.
- Finally, a senior developer will review and finalize comprehensive reports based on the manual and automated testing, prioritizing and organizing the results to give teams clear direction as to where to begin the remediation. Our senior developers have over a decade of experience creating and deploying accessible mobile apps and websites, so they’re invaluable in their role of making remediation suggestions streamlined and clear.
Why do we combine human and automated testing?
Automated testing has a lot of benefits and should be part of a larger accessibility testing strategy, but it has limitations. At the end of the day, people of all abilities, not machines, are using websites. That’s why real people carefully testing under scenarios representing a variety of disabilities are required to understand the true accessibility of a website.
Read: Is automated testing enough for accessibility compliance?
Want to learn more about our four-point hybrid testing?
We’re confident our proven testing methodology will help you achieve immediate accessibility compliance and provide the knowledge to achieve sustainability and self-sufficiency. Talk to us to learn more, or get started with a free and confidential website accessibility scan. We look forward to helping you meet all your accessibility goals.