Initial Publication Date: August 25, 2006

About the Accessibility of SERC Websites

SERC is committed to making the materials on its websites accessible to the widest possible audience. Our websites are built using current web standards, and we strive to follow best practices with regard to accessibility. In general, our public pages target WCAG 2.1 AA conformance standards, which includes the older Section 508 standards.

The actual accessibility of content on our site is the result of both the technical platform and the expertise of our contributing authors and partners. To the extent possible, we've designed our underlying tools to create accessible web pages. In 2019, we reviewed and modified the html generated by our systems and our built-in templates and tools for conformance to the WCAG 2.1 standards. Full accessibility also depends on our many contributing authors making wise choices in authoring the content they share through our sites (e.g. a computer can ensure that all images have alternative text, but only the original author can ensure that the text correctly conveys the original purpose of the image).  Through the Compass project, in 2022, we developed new approaches to supporting the authoring of accessible content.  We provide both just-in-time prompts within our editing system (e.g. reminding authors to provide alternative text and to nest headings appropriately) and also documentation and support to our contributors and partners, enabling them to develop their expertise in creating accessible content.

We are always looking for ways we can improve the accessibility of our websites. If you have suggestions, and especially if you have difficulty using any part of our website we strongly encourage you to get in touch.

About Web Standards and Older Browsers

Our ability to make our websites as widely accessible as they are is largely a result of our use of web standards. The upside of this approach is that our pages load quickly and work flexibly for a very wide range of viewers. The downside is that some folks are using older web browsers that that don't support current web standards--most notably Internet Explorer.

While it should be possible to access the content of our sites in these older browsers you won't get the same pleasing experience you would using a modern browser. So we'd encourage everyone who can to make sure they are using an up-to-date web browser.