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Student Media website wins accessibility challenge

The Student Media website reduced its accessibility errors by 80 percent during NC State’s Web Accessibility Challenge to take top honors in the 500-1,500 web pages division.

“It can be challenging to retro-fit websites to meet accessibility guidelines, which is why it is so important to create content with accessibility in mind,” Jamie Lynn Gilbert, Student Media Associate Director, said. “Creating PDFs from Word instead of scanned documents is one of the major ways we have been able to better meet the needs of users with different abilities.”

Gilbert runs the department website with IT Manager Doug Flowers. The two also managed the site in 2013 when it won its division in a similar contest.

Student Media was one of 32 campus departments and student groups that entered its website into the Web Accessibility Challenge, whose goal is to make websites more accessible for users with disabilities. Equal Opportunity and Equity won its division of 1-500 pages with a 50 percent improvement rate, while Institute for Transportation Research and Education corrected 69 percent of its errors to win the 1,500+ pages plus division.