Cynthia Says is a website accessibility testing site. Type in your site’s URL, choose your desired level of WCAG compliance and get a report.

It is very easy to use. So easy that it has become a favourite party trick for consultants wanting to impress workshops or steering groups.

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Accessibility – not just a box ticking exercise

An accessibility expert will be able to explain each fail and warning, describe how to fix it and how to avoid it happening again. In particular he or she will begin to break down the list into issues which have arisen during content management and issues which are inherent in the site’s design and technologies. And from there to begin to compile a list of questions for the site developer.

If these explanations are not provided, ask yourself what value the consultant has brought to the issue.

Be wary of any advice which throws the entire responsibility onto your site developer. Accessibility has to be prioritised during development, scoped, budgeted for and tested. Check your Project Plan for details of what was promised and what you signed off on. Follow the accessibility advice provided during CMS training.

Key points:

  • Cynthia Says can test your site’s accessibility
  • fails and warnings have to checked manually
  • responsibility for accessibility is shared between client and developer