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Appendix B: Accessibility and Section 508

Appendix B. Accessibility and Section 508

Perhaps the greatest promise of the Web is that virtually anyone with a computer can use and create content on it. Unfortunately, for millions of Americans and untold numbers internationally, this promise is just that—a promise. Many Web sites and resources, including multimedia movies, are not available to these users, because the sites accommodate only users with standard computer configurations and no disabilities.

For educational Web sites, this is bad news, indeed. Nearly 20% of all Americans have at least one disability that may affect how they access Web content. If educational sites are not accessible to them, then this group of users is denied a learning opportunity enjoyed by others, simply on the basis of their disability. As eLearning developers, it is our responsibility to ensure that the content we develop is not just pedagogically sound, visually appealing, and properly functioning; it is also our responsibility to make sure that this content is accessible.

This appendix, which is by no means exhaustive, provides a quick introduction to the terms and concepts of accessibility, as well as a glimpse of how to use Macromedia Dreamweaver MX and Flash MX to create accessible content, and concludes with several references for further information.


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