Domain Accessibility Audit

The Domain Accessibility Audit application can be used to thoroughly check any website for accessibility violations. As opposed to the Mura Accessibility plugin, it is not integrated into Mura, and might report issues caused by Mura itself or the NatSci theme. It will also report issues caused by included content such as YouTube videos, which are generally missed by the Mura plugin.

Audits are regularly created for NatSci and other MSU websites (typically every month for NatSci). They can include a domain and all subdomains. In particular, websites within the natsci.msu.edu domain are included in the audit of the same name. Other websites will be separate, generally with their own audit.

Depending on the options used to create the audit, there might be limits to the number of pages checked for each website. If your website audit is not complete and you wish to see a more complete one, let us know.

Let's take an example website (this one!) and see how to quickly spot issues.

The website itself (web.natsci.msu.edu) is not listed in the list of audits at https://domain-accessibility-audit.natsci.msu.edu/. Since it ends in natsci.msu.edu, we look at the latest natsci.msu.edu audit. The first section on the page gives the parameters that have been used to create the audit. If it uses sitemaps, all pages in Mura sites should be included up to the given limit because site maps get created automatically for NatSci Mura sites (you can check that file for your site at /sitemap.xml).

We can ignore statistics for the whole audit, to look for our website in the "Domains" section. Clicking on it reveals statistics specific to that website. In particular, we can take a look at the Violations section, which combines issues from all the site pages. The most critical issues are first. In our case, the first has the title "Ensures all ARIA attributes have valid values". The little 'i' icon links to an explanation of the issue on the Deque website. A click on the + button reveals the affected pages for this issue. Clicking on a page link leads to more details about where the issue occurs in the page. "Target" gives the id or the path of the HTML element, and "HTML" gives the whole HTML value of the problematic element.

At this point, it is easier to continue on the page itself, with the "Visit the page" link. The axe plugin for Chrome or for Firefox, depending on your web browser, will help us to see where this element is on the page, so it's time to install it if you don't have it already. To bring up the plugin, we use F12 to display the developer tools and click on the "axe" tab. The "Analyze" button will start checking the page. When it's done, we can see the issues on the left. The arrows on the top right let us move from one issue to the next when there are several in the same category. Most importantly, "highlight" will show the element in the page, and "inspect node" will let us check the HTML in the DOM browser.

Hopefully the description for the issues on the Deque website are clear enough to fix them. If not and you are a bit lost, let us know - we can help !

Domain Accessibility Audit source code on github. Install it on your computer to create your own audits !