course notes 2018/19

accessibility / ux visual

design for UX & accessibility

Mar 6th 2019

As web workers, be that designers or developers, it is our job to create not only engaging user experiences but also to ensure an all inclusive design and setup. Making sure our content is presented in the most accessible and easy way will liberate our user to use the web freely and without hinderance, a benefit to all.

useful reading & references

testing tools

Screenreader experiences

Very timely for our session, a few weeks ago Smasghing Magazine published a brilliant article, titled How A Screen Reader User Accesses The Web: A Smashing Video ↗ – in which Bruce Lawson introduces a webinar with Léonie Watson. It shows recordings of Léonie using a screenreader to access the web – an excellent demo with insights not only from a blind user but one with special expertise in dev and accessibility. Make sure to watch in its entirety!

UX process

DeBono Group: Six Thinking Hats

six thinking hats

UX tools



Helio, by Zurb, is an online set of testing tools to gather feedback on specific design aspects. A free, limited account is available – additional tests can be purchased.


Silverback, by clearleft, is a mac-only app which records users via webcam and screencast. In-app tools allow for study and annotations during review. The app is fully functional with watermark, which can be removed for £29.


Hotjar aims to be an all-in-one tool for site testing and analysis: collecting data for heatmaps, recording activity and more. A free, limited account is available for low traffic sites – paid-for  accounts are offered for high-traffic sites and longer data storage.

Lesson task

nibbler icon

Using one of your online projects – use some of the listed tools to check your work for accessibility issues and let’s discuss possible solutions.

Always bear in mind, of course, that no tool results will ever replace user testing or show a complete list of problems. These tools and checks are great helpers but not easy solution finders.

Best to adopt good practice before you start on your major project :)

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