***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 SAGE Journals 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 Criteria.
During this evaluation, a number of issues were found that will make the site and its content difficult or impossible to use for some individuals with disabilities.
Keyboard users, including screen reader users and users with dexterity impairments, will have difficulties when attempting to use the site. Most importantly, some content cannot be reached or operated via keyboard. In addition, many interactive elements lack a sufficiently visible focus indicator, making it difficult or impossible for many keyboard-only users to effectively use them, as they cannot determine when they have reached the correct element. Focus order is also incorrect in places, further increasing the difficulty of using the site with a keyboard.
Individuals with visual impairments that rely on screen readers will have additional problems. Custom elements do not correctly announce themselves or provide appropriate feedback to screen readers, making them difficult to understand and use. Some form inputs are not appropriately labeled, making them difficult or impossible to use for those that rely on screen readers. Images throughout the site (including all Figures in articles) have missing or incorrect alternative text and images of text are used in place of formatted text, further impacting users with visual impairments. Some content that is grouped together visually is not labeled or grouped programmatically, making it difficult or impossible for screen reader users to understand the relationships between those pieces of content. Some structural information, including headings, lists, and tables on pages and in PDFs, is also not appropriately conveyed to screen reader users, making it difficult to understand content organization.
A number of other issues were found that will make it difficult for users with a variety of disabilities to effectively use the system, including broken "Skip to Main" links, lack of error identification, insufficient link context, use of color alone to distinguish content, insufficient color contrast, missing PDF titles, and missing PDF language identification.
To improve access for users with disabilities, UARC recommends a full WCAG 2.0 AA evaluation and that the problems discovered be remediated.