IA as Inclusive Design
Most of us know that accessibility is important, and some of us are responsible for delivering accessible sites or products, but as a discipline, we’re still figuring out what truly inclusive experiences might look like. Poor information architecture is a huge accessibility problem, but automated accessibility tools can’t check for it, frameworks can’t fix it, and adhering to the letter of WCAG criteria doesn’t make experiences usable, intuitive, or useful to people with different access needs.
Really being inclusive in our design means integrating structural accessibility concerns with the other IA work we do and starting earlier in the design process, instead of leaving it to developers to design as they code. I’ll go through four specific challenges for designers that will help you build structures that turn your experience into one that makes sense to humans, regardless of their abilities.