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Milton Campoverde-Molina, Sergio Luján-Mora, Llorenç Valverde. Web accessibility in the web portals of the educational institutions of Ecuador: preliminary analysis. Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies (Edulearn 2019), p. 4697-4707, Palma de Mallorca (Spain), July 1-3 2019. ISBN: 978-84-09-12031-4. https://doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2019.1171
Web accessibility means that people with some type of disability can make use of the Web in the same conditions as the rest of the people. When talking about web accessibility, we are referring to a web design that allows these people to perceive, understand, navigate and interact with the Web. Web accessibility also benefits other people, including elderly people whose abilities have declined as a result of age. The Web is an unpredictable resource in human activity: education, employment, government, commerce, health, entertainment and many others. Therefore, the Web must be accessible to provide equal access for people with disabilities.
Ecuador, like other countries, has adopted the ISO/IEC 40500:2012 standard, that is equivalent to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0. To follow up on compliance in Ecuador, the Ecuadorian Standardization Institute has created the Ecuadorian technical regulation RTE INEN 288 “Accessibility for web content” that entered into force on August 8, 2016. This regulation applies to the contents published on public and private sector websites that provide public services. In its first transitory provision, until August 8, 2018, all Ecuadorian web sites that provide a public service must be accessible with the WCAG 2.0 with a level of conformance A. According to the deadline established, Ecuadorian websites must have complied with the standard of accessibility at present.
Despite the importance of web accessibility, compliance in the web portals of educational institutions is limited in Ecuador. The purpose of this research is to evaluate and analyze the regulatory compliance of accessibility in the web portals of the educational institutions of the cities of Cuenca, Guayaquil and Quito with the WCAG 2.0 and a level of conformance A. To this end, we seek answers to the following questions: What web portals of educational institutions comply with WCAG 2.0 and a level of conformance A? What is the average of errors in the web portals of educational institutions? What are the most common accessibility problems? The purpose of this investigation is to verify if the entry into force of the Ecuadorian technical regulation and the fulfillment of the term of the first transitory have contributed to improve the accessibility of educational web portals. Therefore, this document presents an analysis of educational web pages in Ecuador, using the online tools Examinator, TAW, Markup Validation Service and CSS Validation Service.
For the selection of web portals, we use the information from the master file of educational institutions of the Ministry of Education of Ecuador. With this information, we selected 29 web portals of the educational institutions of the city of Cuenca, 20 of Quito and 20 of Guayaquil according to the domain name .edu.ec. From each of the web portals, up to 7 sample web pages were selected. Of the 460 websites evaluated, the results show that it is necessary to correct errors in all web portals of educational institutions analyzed. The average number of errors in web portals is 348.33. Therefore, the web portals analyzed do not comply with the Ecuadorian technical regulation RTE INEN 288. Given the average of errors found, educational institutions should improve the compliance of the WCAG 2.0 with an arduous work of revision and correction of the source code and design of their web portals.