Day 25: Introduction to Accessible JavaScript

Continuing on my course of study by following the WAS Body of Knowledge (BOK), I’ve moved onto Accessible JavaScript, AJAX, and interactive content for the coming week. The BOK offers a basic list of things to consider when writing dynamic content and code:

  • Manage focus
  • Use semantic HTML
  • Keep content and its changes perceivable
  • Create device-independent event handlers
  • Consider DOM order when adding new content dynamically, and
  • Simplify events.

However, this list isn’t exhaustive, and the BOK doesn’t go into greater detail about what I need to study for or be more knowledgeable about. It does encourage me that I don’t have to be a JavaScript expert to understand the concepts, principles, and strategies for creating accessible code and content.

All that being said, I’d like to get a handle on the basic concepts provided, learn from good examples of accessible JavaScript, and discover other strategies that could be important for the WAS exam and my future as a digital accessibility consultant.

Things I accomplished

I gave myself a bit of slack today since it’s Christmas Eve, and my family time is more important than my study habits during holidays. However, I did dedicate 45 minutes to remain consistent and get a jump on the next section of the BOK.

What I learned today

  • JavaScript is not inherently good or evil. Dependent upon the programmer, the use of JavaScript can create barriers or improve accessibility.
  • WCAG 2.0 requires that JavaScript, when enabled, must be accessible.
  • The Enter key doesn’t always trigger an onClick event if used on an non-link or non-control element (i.e. a div element). In those cases, the Enter or Spacebar will have to be detected for interaction.