ERIC Number: EJ1022006
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Abstractor: As Provided
The Accessibility and Usability of College Websites: Is Your Website Presenting Barriers to Potential Students?
Erickson, William; Trerise, Sharon; Lee, Camille; VanLooy, Sara; Knowlton, Samuel; Bruyère, Susanne
Community College Journal of Research and Practice, v37 n11 p864-876 2013
Thirty community college websites were evaluated for compliance with federal web accessibility standards found in Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 794d). Two typical sites were tested for usability by individuals with visual impairments, individuals with reading-related learning disabilities (LD), and a control group of individuals without disabilities. Ten additional sites were selected for Simulated Target Group usability testing. Testing revealed that less than 1% of pages evaluated met Section 508 web accessibility standards. Over half of the users found the online admissions application process frustrating, and less than a third of all users could complete the online application without assistance. The Simulated Target Group usability testing encountered similar usability issues across the additional 10 community college websites examined. All four evaluation techniques found that community college websites fared poorly in both accessibility and usability. However, many of the issues could be addressed without significant effort.
Descriptors: Student Recruitment, Web Sites, Community Colleges, College Applicants, College Admission, Usability, Compliance (Legal), Federal Legislation, Disabilities, Control Groups, Evaluation Criteria, Check Lists, Evaluation Methods, Access to Information, Task Analysis
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Publication Type: Reports - Research; Journal Articles
Education Level: Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges; Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Rehabilitation Act 1973