Acquiring or Building Digital Products
All digital products must be verified to ensure they meet Ohio State's accessibility standards. This includes any product that is: built (whether built in-house or by hiring a third-party vendor to build to Ohio State’s specifications); purchased from a vendor; or acquired for use.
What is a Digital Product?
Digital products include any software, freeware, computer or mobile application, website or other digital service used by the university community.
How do I ensure Digital Products are accessible?
Digital products must meet Ohio State's Minimum Digital Accessibility Standards (MDAS) which adopt the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 as a minimum standard.
Note: If you are creating content to post on a website or application, please review the Producing Accessible Digital Content page.
Contact Your Coodinator
Each unit has its own unique process for implementing digital products, whether built or purchased. When starting the process, please contact your unit's Digital Accessibility Coordinator to ensure the proper process is followed for your unit.
Training and Resources for Builders
If you are a web or mobile app developer, skills training courses and resources are available to assist you in learning how to build accessible websites and applications.
This curriculum explores accessibility concepts, the steps in the evaluation process, and various accessibility testing techniques and methodologies. Contains 18 BuckeyeLearn Modules.
A tool to help identify accessibility errors on websites.
This curriculum explores how to identify accessibility problems in native mobile apps and how to code them with accessibility in mind. Contains 3 BuckeyeLearn Modules.
This curriculum explores digital accessibility concepts and their application in the development and testing of web sites and web applications. Contains 11 BuckeyeLearn Modules.
This curriculum explores digital accessibility concepts and their application in designing web sites and web applications. Contains 4 BuckeyeLearn Modules.
Learn how to create a compelling, enjoyable, and useful user experience for people with disabilities.
Assessing the Accessibility of a Digital Product
An accessibility evaluation needs to be done for ALL digital products, whether purchased or built. The level of scrutiny to which a product will be subjected depends upon its risk level in the Ohio State Accessibility Risk Management Framework. Some lower-risk products will only require a basic accessibility evaluation, while higher-risk products will require a more rigorous, comprehensive evaluation.
Accessibility evaluations generally increase both the time and money required to implement a digital product. Plan accordingly for your project timeline and your budget. All evaluations must be completed and, if necessary, an approved exception must be in place, BEFORE a product may go live.
You can also search for the product within our Accessibility Evaluation Results List [MS Excel] to see if the product you are implementing has already been evaluated.
When a Full Manual Evaluation is required for a product, it must be performed by an OSU ADA Certified Evaluator, which includes internal staff who have successfully completed the ADA Coordinator's Office accessibility evaluation training, or an OSU-Approved Accessibility Evaluation Supplier.
Accessibility Evaluation Suppliers
The following suppliers have been awarded the RFP for Accessibility Evaluation Services at Ohio State and can be used when an OSU ADA Certified Evaluator is not available to run a full manual evaluation.
Suppliers' contact information is provided below. We recommend filling out the following sections of the Accessibility Evaluation Template [MS Word] and sending it to the vendor(s) of your choice to initiate communication regarding your request for an estimate:
- Product Description
- Proposed Scope of Work
- Use Cases
You should expect a quote back within one week, and you can request that the vendor(s) include a timeframe regarding when they will be able to perform the evaluation. (Additional resources for requesting an evaluation can be found in "Completing the Evaluation," on the Full Manual Evaluations page.
- Supplier ID #: SPL-0001702
- Supplier Contract #: SPC-1000000259
- Contact: Aaron Way, Account Executive
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: (703) 721-7014
- Supplier ID #: SPL-0021247
- Supplier Contract #: SPC-1000000260
- Contact: Tushar Mehta, Chief Operating Officer
- Email: email@example.com
- Phone: (646) 880-4504
- Supplier ID #: SPL-0000993
- Supplier Contract #: SPC-1000000258
- Contact: Jennifer Sagalyn, Director of Business Development
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: (617) 972-7868
Do I need to get an accessibility evaluation for a free digital product that I want to download?
Yes. Accessibility evaluations are required for all digital products, regardless of cost. The only exception to this rule would be for a product that was going to be used only for personal productivity, and whose output would not be used by individuals other than the person downloading the product. Check with your unit’s Digital Accessibility Coordinator before acquiring any type of digital product to ensure it receives the proper type of accessibility evaluation.