A complete Guide to Accessibility in UX Design (With Resource List)

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A Guide to Accessibility in UX Design (With Resource List)

It is important to create products that are not only enjoyable for all users but also that are not harmful to the environment or other people. UX designers must build empathy and accept accessibility requirements in order to create better products. It takes courage to advocate for inclusive, accessible designs, sustainable business models, and planet-friendly solutions. This article will help you understand accessibility in UX design.


What is accessibility in design?

Designing products and services that are accessible and inclusive is all about creating products and services that can be used by everyone regardless of their background and circumstances.
You can create an environment that is accessible for everyone, not just those with disabilities, when you design your product or service.


Different types of disabilities

When working on accessibility in UX design it is important to remember that people can experience temporary or situational impairments in addition to permanent disabilities.


Accessibility in UX Design

Accessibility is often associated with those with special needs. Screen readers, for example, are used by people with visual impairments. UX designers are not affected by this. Accessibility refers to how a product or service can be made more usable. This could include any special needs or the context in which the product is used.

If you are using a navigation app while driving, for example, the situation will change depending on whether or not you have any disabilities. To meet the specific needs of people with disabilities, it is crucial to design assistive technology that addresses all their needs. A UX designer must have a set of principles that is beneficial to everyone in order to meet all users’ needs. This is what UX designers are really looking for when it comes to accessibility in UX design.


Why Accessibility is Important?

Accessibility in UX design is important for users because it allows them to use the product or service with no worries. This means that people with low vision or color blindness can still use your product’s information and experience.

Designing with accessibility in mind on the business side means you can reach more customers and not create barriers due to poorly designed flow or design.


Design accessibility:

There are many ways to create an accessible design. However, it is possible to focus only on a few of them.


Check your accessibility status

This can be done using the AXE Chrome extension. This tool will perform web accessibility testing in accordance with WCAG guidelines. It will also give you an “accessibility compliance score”. The results will help you determine how hard you need to make your product design more accessible.


Ensure sufficient color contrast

Low contrast between background and text is the most common accessibility problem. Around two billion people have severe vision impairments due to various diseases and conditions. Imagine how many people you can help by making a slight adjustment in the text contrast of your design.


Color combination with other elements

People with low visual acuity and colorblindness may have difficulty understanding what your content means if you only outline the essential information in color.

To make your message accessible to people with visual impairments, use labels, bold text and underlines.


Use focus indicator

An outline is usually created when you choose a webpage item. This outline is called a highlight indicator. It indicates which element the keyboard is focusing on, and where you are when you navigate a website. You can use focus indicators to identify links, form fields and buttons. These indicators are useful for people with visual impairments or those who have limited mobility due to specific diseases or injuries.


Add text alternative to images

Screen readers can be used to convert text into speech if a person is unable to see or has difficulty reading. Screen readers can only read written words so webpage images need textual descriptions. Alternative text This describes the meaning of the image and its relationship to the content. Alternate text can be added to the Attribute or simply explain the image in relation to the context.


Establish content hierarchy

Subheadings and headings are used to organize the text and aid readers in understanding the logical sequence of the narrative. Larger font titles are more noticeable and can be used as content milestones.It is important to use correct structural HTML elements when building a website.

The HTML hierarchy is created by using tags. HTML tags should not be used to describe a webpage item without meaning. On the other hand, headings shouldn’t be styled with bolder text and larger fonts where possible. Tags must be used


Enable keyboard navigation

One of the most important accessibility features is keyboard navigation. This feature is useful for those with motor impairments and poor muscle control. It also helps screen readers users who are visually impaired. Navigation must be intuitive and logical, in line with the page’s visual flow.


Design the website with real users

Once you’re done designing for accessibility, use accessibility-testing tools (like, for example, Color Oracle mentioned above) and ask users with different capabilities to check your design.


Accessibility Resources

Ideal world would see every UX designer have access to the appropriate UX research resources and testing resources.


Accessibility Best practices

These are some of the most important principles and guidelines behind accessibility.

  1. Material Design Guidelines
    2.Inclusive Design Challenge Generator
    3. Microsoft Inclusive Designs Toolkit
    4. Ontario Gov Inclusive Design Principles
    5. What’s Plain Writing?
    6. User Research Consent Template

Ethical Design Resources

Find out more about ethical, courageous design and how it can enhance your product design process.

  1. Digital Rights
    9. Design Ethics, Activism
    10. Templates and Tools
    11. Personal and Design Values Cards (Etsy).
    12. Designer’s Code of Ethics
    13. Make a Good Pledge

Dark Patterns and Honest Patterns

Dark patterns are the antithesis to accessibility. They exploit user psychology and behavior to trick people into performing an action (or not performing it) that they were intended.

  1. Dark Patterns Library
    15. How Do We Draw The Line?
    16. Latest Legislation

Algorithmic Bias

Find out more about the biases built into algorithms and how they impact the world that we live in.

  1. Meyer’s personal story about inadvertent algorithmic cruelty
    18. Pinterest’s Latest Features
    19. Inclusion and the Algorithmic Bias Paradox
    20. Interesting Gov UK Review of Algorithmic Bias
    21. Algorithmic Bias for Healthcare
    22. Uber Algorithmic Bias Testing

Planet Centric Design Resources

Are you interested in learning more about the planet-centric design? These are some great websites and articles that you should bookmark.

  1. Oda Design for Carbon Awareness. Case Study
    24. Sustainable Web Design
    25. Calculate Your Website’s Carbon
    26. How Green is Your Website?
    27. QR codes to display a System’s View (Luxury Tech).
    28. Earth Definition of Video on Mobile
    29. Design Resources
    30. Creating an Earth-Centric Future
    31. Designing and Envisioning a Planet-Centric Future

Empathy Generators

Empathy generators allow you to consider your product from more user perspectives.

  1. Generates multiple perspectives and a range of circumstances
    34. Uses Microsoft Inclive Scenarios
    35. Empathy for People with Disabilities
    36. For inclusive persons, you can use the Ideasn Cards for Humanity generator

Archetypes / Pen Personas / Pen Portraits for Accessibility

Persona resources are designed with inclusion in mind.

  1. UK Gov Data Driven Open-Source Accessibility Personas
    38. Cambridge Uni Data Driven Open Source Inclusive Design Personas
    39. w3 Org Stories from Web Users Pen Personas/Archetypes
    40. Short & Sweet Accessibility for Digital Projects Pen Personas/Archetypes/Student explorations
    41. A collection of different people illustrations for your personas

Simulators to Acessibility Usability Testing

These simulators will allow you to see how a digital experience for people with disabilities feels. This is a powerful way for you to get out of your own biases and gain a deeper empathy for your users.

  1. Funkify Disabilities Simulator plugin Chrome (also a Figma plug)
    43. Proxy Persona Testing
    44. List Figma Plugins to Accessibility

Accessible Design-Related Movies & TV Series

These are some of the most thought-provoking TV shows and movies that you can watch to help raise awareness about accessibility in design.

  1. Devs
    46. Social Dilemma
    47. Don’t Look Up
    48. The Social Network
    49. The Great Hack

Books About Accessible Designs

These titles will give you inspiration and insight into the deeper concepts of good UX design and how it can have an impact on the world.

  1. Beyond Sticky notes
    51. How to Design Services that Work
    52. Tragic Design: How to Fix Bad Product Design
    53. Design Justice: Community-Led Strategies to Build the Worlds We Want
    54. The World Has Been Ruined By Design: What Designers Did to the World and What We Can Do To Fix It
    55. Future Ethics
    56. User-Friendly – How Hidden Rules of Design are Changing Our Ways to Live, Work, Play
    57. Ends
    58. Do Good Design

People to Follow

These are some of the top experts in the field, who are passionate about accessibility in design.

  1. Vivianne Castillo
    60. Lou Downe
    61. Sasha Costanza-Chock
    62. Tim Frick
    63. Kat Zhou
    64. Alba Vilamil
    65. Laura Kalbag


Ui/UX design services

Our Ui UX design services help you improve your user’s experience and let them enjoy checking out your website or application. We help make your interfaces more user-friendly and efficient. UI/UX design services can also help you gather valuable feedback from customers to improve your product or service.

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