Skip to site navigation

Newsletter issue #25 - 3rd April 2006

This issue

Hello and welcome to the April edition of the Webcredible newsletter!

In this issue:

  • Feature article: Usability testing with children
  • Top tip: Improving accessibility for keyboard-only users
  • Useful program: Web Developer Extension
  • Top link: BBC My Web My Way
  • New articles in March
  • Webcredible news in March

Enjoy!

Feature article: Usability testing with children

Conducting usability testing with children is of course very similar to conducting usability testing with adults. There are a few differences between the two though, so if you plan on testing with children be sure to read this article before you begin.

Read this article in full at www.webcredible.co.uk/user-friendly-resources/web-usability/testing-children.shtml.

Top tip: Improving accessibility for keyboard-only users

The needs of keyboard-only web users are often overlooked when webmasters try to improve the accessibility of their website. Keyboard-only users can include individuals with mobility impairments, dexterity problems or even someone who's broken their arm. To help these web users, try employing some of the following simple techniques:

  1. Focus state on links As a keyboard-only web user you navigate through web pages by tabbing from link to link (and form item to form item), but it can sometimes be difficult to know exactly where you are on the page. By assigning a background colour to the focus state of each link, it becomes much easier for these users to orientate themselves on the page. Go to the Webcredible website and start tabbing to see a real-life example!
  2. Visible skip to main content link A skip to main content link is usually an invisible link, and when activated takes users to the main content on the page. It's useful to screen reader users as they can skip over the navigation and get straight to the content. This skip link is useful for keyboard-only users too as they don't need to tab through the navigation on each page to get to the content. As such, do make the link visible when it's focused on. Again, go to the Webcredible website and start tabbing to see this in action.
  3. Tabbing order You can also change the tabbing order of links and form items on the page, so keyboard-only users get to the most important links and form items first (you can achieve this through the tabindex command). This is only worth doing though if there is an item on the page you expect most users will want to use straightaway. For example, on a search driven site you may wish to have users tab straight on to the search function.

Useful program: Web Developer Extension

The Web Developer Extension adds an extra toolbar into the Firefox toolbar area, and provides a large number of tools. For anyone who uses Firefox that's interested in accessibility and CSS web development, this is an essential must-have for testing web pages!

You can use this program at chrispederick.com/work/webdeveloper/.

Top link: BBC My Web My Way

My Web My Way, from the BBC, explains how you can change your browser, computer, keyboard and mouse settings to make the web more accessible for you.

Check out this useful site at www.bbc.co.uk/accessibility.

New articles in March

Read these and many other articles at www.webcredible.co.uk/user-friendly-resources.

Webcredible news in March

  • May training dates announced
  • Webcredible is recruiting a senior usability consultant!
  • Three Webcredible websites nominated for accessibility award

Read these news stories in full at www.webcredible.co.uk/about-us/latest-news.shtml.

Training courses

Courses continue to sell out well in advance! Our next training courses will take place in our training centre in Aldgate, London in April and May:

  • Usability testing training - Monday 24th April & Monday 22nd May. For more information and to reserve your place before it fills up please consult our usability testing training page.
  • Writing for the web training - Tuesday 25th April & Tuesday 23rd May. For more information and to reserve your place before it fills up please consult our writing for the web training page.
  • Web usability training - Wednesday 26th April & Wednesday 24th May. For more information and to reserve your place before it fills up please consult our web usability training page.
  • Web accessibility training - Thursday 27th April & Thursday 25th May. For more information and to reserve your place before it fills up please consult our web accessibility training page.
  • Advanced CSS training - Friday 28th April & Friday 26th May. For more information and to reserve your place before it fills up please consult our advanced CSS training page.

About Webcredible

Based in London, UK, Webcredible is a user experience consultancy. Tailor-made usability, accessibility & design solutions include:

Please contact us on 020 7423 6320 or , or consult www.webcredible.co.uk for further information.

Skip to site navigation