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Accessibility Checklist: Information for Everyone
Are you looking for ways to outreach to more people? Are you trying to get people involved? Are you trying to keep them involved? How a document reads and looks affects whether people can understand the information being shared. This is a checklist for document accessibility. It also includes some tips to think about when making programs or services accessible to all people.
Document Accessibility Checklist:
- Does the title of your document explain what it’s about?
- Did you use “Veranda” or “Arial” as a font?
- Did you use size 14 font on your public documents?
- If you use pictures or other visual images on your document, remember that too many pictures can make the page confusing to look at.
- Did you provide open space on your documents? (Remember not to crunch too much information on one page.)
- Did you use bullets or lists in your document?
- Did you use language that is easy to understand? (If you need ideas, look at the Language Accessibility Checklist on the next page)
Language Accessibility Checklist:
- Check the grade level and readability in Microsoft Word:
- Set it up (you will just need to do this once):
- Select ‘Tools’ at the top of your screen.
- Then select ‘Options’ at the very bottom of that list.
- Then select ‘Spelling and Grammar’ (on the top of that screen; usually over to the right).
- Then select ‘Show Readability Statistics’ (at the very bottom of that list).
- Now it is set!
Be direct. Write the main ideas you want to get across.
Use short sentences (generally fewer than 15 words).
Use one and two syllable words as much as possible.
Use common words such as "car" instead of "vehicle."
If you need to use a complicated (hard) word, explain what it means in the same sentence.
- Complete your document
- Then select ‘Tools’
- Then select ‘Spelling and Grammar.’ (After checking the spelling and grammar, the program will show the Readability Statistics window at the very end.)
- Your document is ready if the “Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level” is 8.0 or less.
For more examples and ideas toward language accessibility, refer to Youth Friendly Accessible Language document .
Other Things To Keep In Mind:
- Did you offer documents in alternative formats?
- These formats can include:
- Electronic format (CD or diskette), usually in Microsoft Word
- Audio tape
- Laminated copies
- Large Print (Size 22 Text)
- Did you include a cover page to outline the main points or topics in your packet? (This would be like a Table of Contents.)
- Are you ready to describe the visuals or the words on the overhead if you are using a PowerPoint presentation?
- Did you remember to bring alternative formats of that presentation if you are using a PowerPoint presentation?
- Did you use respectful disability language?
- Did you make your event accessible?
This document was co-written by the National Youth Leadership Network (NYLN)and Kids As Self Advocates (KASA).
For more information:
National Youth Leadership Network www.nyln.org
Portland State University
RRI PO Box 751
Portland, OR 97207-0751
NYLN is supported by Portland State University.
The National Youth Leadership Network (NYLN) is a voice for young leaders with disabilities. We live across the United States and its territories. This is a place where young leaders come together to support (help) other youth with disabilities. We believe youth can do a lot! NYLN tries to help youth at national, state, and local levels. We link them to opportunities for education, employment, and independence. NYLN also talks about things important to youth with disabilities, such as policies (laws) affecting our lives.
For more information:
Kids As Self Advocates www.fvkasa.org
2340 Alamo SE, Ste 102
Albuquerque, NM 87106
KASA is a project of Family Voices, Inc. www.familyvoices.org.
Kids As Self Advocates (KASA) is a project created by youth with disabilities for youth. Young people who work with KASA are from all over the United States. KASA knows youth can make choices and advocate for themselves if they have the information and support they need. KASA believes young people with disabilities will have control over their own lives and futures. We will help make this happen by teaching youth about their rights, giving peer support and training, and changing the systems that affect our lives to include us.
NYLN and KASA decided to co-write this document because:
- KASA works with youth ages 13-24 and NYLN with youth 16-28.
- Both groups reach out to national networks.
- Both KASA and NYLN work hard to be accessible to youth with disabilities. They wanted to share what they have learned “for youth with disabilities, by youth with disabilities.”
© 2006 NYLN and KASA