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WCAG 2.2 and the IBM Accessibility Equal Access Toolkit

taught by: Phill Jenkins, Josiah Hoskins
co-presented by: Thomas Brunet

Session Summary

The IBM Equal Access Toolkit provides free guidance and tools for roles throughout your application development workflow. Learn how the accessibility guidance and tools can help you and your designers and developers be ready for WCAG 2.2.


October 5, 2023, WCAG 2.2 became a W3C Recommendation. As a result, product and web development teams have needed to understand how the new “standard” will impact their requirements and when they’ll need to respond.

IBM freely provides the IBM Equal Access Toolkit, which includes the guidance, tools, and requirements that IBM uses to create accessible, global products. The presenters work closely with application and product teams to understand where novice designers and developers struggle to prevent, identify, and fix accessibility concerns. In this session, we give a brief demonstration of the toolkit and tools, highlighting the newer WCAG 2.2 guidance and features, and show how to use these tools in your own practice.

More about the design tools and guidance:

  • The Accessibility Checker is a freely available open-source Chrome, Firefox, and Edge extension that integrates into the browsers' development tools. The engine can also be integrated into various continuous integration / continuous delivery CI/CD processes and testing frameowrks. It utilizes IBM's accessibility rules engine, which detects WCAG 2.2 accessibility issues for web-based content or applications. The Checker enables teams to rapidly complete page-level testing and quickly identify the source of accessibility issues and try suggested fixes. Specialized views and visualizaitons help make the test and remediation process quicker.
  • Web developers can more easily identify issues and remediate them during unit testing.
  • Auditors and test professionals can more easily associate issues with WCAG requirements, to document in an Accessibility Conformance Report or to pass on to a developer as individual issues for a particular requirement.

Hands-on: During this session, we will demonstrate and explain many of the features of the Accessibility Checker so you can more effectively use the tool. You'll be given instructions to try out some of the features while you check a website on your own.

Practical Skills

  • Participants will learn the IBM Equal Access Toolkit approach to accessibility requirements, guidance, and tools through the lens of the new WCAG 2.2 requirements.
  • Participants will learn how the IBM Equal Access Accessibility Checker can help you assess your web content and applications and the new rules and features to address WCAG 2.2 requirements.
  • Participants will learn how design tools and guidance will shift-left the work of accessibility and meeting WCAG 2.2 earlier in the software development process.