FirstSearch

Summary

***Below is a summary of UARC's accessibility evaluation. For the full report, click the pdf link in the menu on the right.*** 

MSU Usability/Accessibility Research and Consulting (MSU UARC) conducted a high-level accessibility evaluation of the OCLC FirstSearch ERIC platform to evaluate its conformance with WCAG 2.0 AA Criteria. This evaluation did not include all functionality or content of the site or all WCAG 2.0 AA Success Criteria.

During this evaluation, a number of issues were found that may make the site and its content impossible to use for some individuals with disabilities and difficult to use for many others

Keyboard users, including screen reader users and users with dexterity impairments, will find it difficult to use some site content. Focus order is incorrect in some places, increasing the difficulty of using the site with a keyboard. Some interactive elements lack a sufficiently visible focus indicator, making it difficult for many keyboard-only users to effectively use them, as they cannot determine when they have reached the correct element.

Individuals with visual impairments, including those that rely on screen readers, will have significant problems using the site. Some content is not read out correctly and structural information (including headings and lists) is not appropriately conveyed to users, making it difficult or impossible to understand content and organization in places. Tables are inappropriately used for layout throughout the site, resulting in confusing and misleading information being read out to screen reader users. Many form inputs are not appropriately labeled, making those inputs difficult or impossible to use for those that rely on screen readers. Custom elements do not correctly announce themselves to screen readers, making them difficult to understand and use. Many images lack appropriate alternative text, significantly impacting users with visual impairments.

Other issues were found that will make it difficult for users with a variety of disabilities to effectively use the system, including non-adjustable time limits, insufficient color contrast, use of color alone to convey information, insufficient link context, missing labels, no means to bypass repeated navigation on pages, and inappropriate page titles.

To improve access for users with disabilities, UARC recommends a full WCAG 2.0 AA evaluation and that the problems discovered be remediated.