ADA Guidelines

Guidelines for ADA Compliant Videos

As you are preparing and uploading your videos, it's important to keep in mind all our students, faculty and staff who have disabilities. There are a few main points to consider when putting together these videos to make them accessible to all audiences.

  • Stronger contrast between colors will make it easier for viewers with visual impairments.
  • From our brand colors, here are the combinations that have good contrast: 
    • Blue and Gold
    • Blue and White
    • Gold and Black
    • Black and White
  • Do not use our gold and white or our blue and black together
  • Closed captions allow users with hearing difficulties, including full deafness, to understand what is being said in the video. 
  • In addition to the dialogue of the video, closed captions also include other important noises.
  • Closed captions could include music, sound effects or anything else that affects the dialogue or actions of those in the video. 
    This does note include background music.
  • Be mindful of how you refer to things on the screen or in the room with you.
  • "Take a look at this" doesn't give users who are blind, or who have limited vision, enough information to understand what you are referencing.
  • Give a brief description of what you are referring to. For example "take a look at this picture of three students under a tree studying."
  • When you are finished with the video, take a "watch" with your eyes closed. Is there any point in which you're not sure what's on the screen and feel like you need to look?
  • If that is the case, we need to provide an audio description link in the video description or in any messages sent out with the video. 
  • Audio Descriptions are a separate audio recording that can be played alongside the video and describe what is being shown. 
  • Facebook and YouTube have the option to auto-generate captions for the videos you upload. 
  • After uploading, and before publishing, these captions should be edited for any mis-matched words, punctuation, grammar and timing. 
  • Facebook and YouTube offer tutorials, including videos, on how to make edits to their captions.
  • YouDescribe,org is a free platform that allows users with a Google account to record audio descriptions for YouTube videos.
  • For help with captions, determining if a video needs an audio description and recording one, color contrast questions, or other ADA requirements for your videos, please reach out to the Web Services Team at System Office.

Guidelines for ADA Complaint PDFS

When making documents that will be shared via email or the web, it is important to make sure they are complaint with ADA standards. Follow these guidelines to make your documents accessible to all audiences. For documents intended for external webpages, please work with your college's web lead or Web Services at System Office to create these as webpages. 

  • All text and important graphics need to have sufficient color contrast between the foreground and background.
  • Combination of brand colors that have good color contrast (Pass):
    • Blue and White
    • Blue and Gold (at largest font sizes)
    • Gold and Black
    • Black and White
  • Combination of brand colors that have poor color contrast (Fail):
    • Gold and White
    • Blue and Black
    • Gold and Gray
    • Blue and Gray
  • Text size should be no smaller than 12 pt font.
  • Fonts should be relatively simple with even spacing and heights for all letters.
  • Fonts should avoid exaggerated swirls and all-caps or all-lower-cased letters.
  • Avoid any fonts that include "Light," "Condensed" or "Script" in the name.
  • Ultramagnetic and Hand of Sean can be used for headers but should not be used for more than a short phrase or single words.
  • Bolding, italics, and all-caps should be used only to emphasize a word or short phrase.
  • Alternative text needs to be provided for all images, logos, and other graphics that are not purely decorative.
  • Alt text should be kept to a sentence or two. More complex graphics, such as charts or processes, need to also be described in body text. 
  • It is recommended that graphics are kept as simple as possible.
  • Text must be separate from graphical elements unless it is part of a logo. Text that is created as part of the background graphics are not picked up as text by screen readers.
  • Incidental text, or non-relative background text such as signs or posters in photos do not need to be separate.
  • Linked text should be underlined, rather than just a different color.
  • Full URLs can be used but should be as clean and short as possible.
  • URLs that are being provided but not linked can be treated as plain text.
  • Table should be kept as simple as possible, avoiding layered headings.
  • Heading rows must be repeated if the table splits between pages and should be shaded or otherwise visually identified as a header.
  • Each data item should have its own cell.
  • It is better to use multiple smaller tables than one large and complex table. 
  • Do Not use table for layout purposes
  • All pdfs should be reviewed for tagging before being posted online.
  • The document properties, such as title, author, set language, and initial view, also need to be reviewed before posting.