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Validation Information and Procedures

I. Why validate?

Accessible web sites are designed so that everyone, regardless of sensory impairment, can navigate and understand the information presented. An accessible site provides alternative descriptions and links, and uses a variety of strategies to make the site "readable" by the specialized software used by people with sensory impairments. 
Meeting HTML encoding standards also insures that our web site/portal will lend itself readily to hardware and software developments.

  • Accessibility: Cynthia Says
    • Cynthia Says is the online counterpart of AccVerify, the accessibility software purchased by the University of Maine.  It provides feedback to users in a reporting format that is clear and easy to understand. Accessibility issues are detected within web sites from Web-based applications, dynamic pages, or static HTML pages. Users get an immediate “status” report of their Web site accessibility
  • HTML Standards: 3WC Validation Service (
    • The 3WC Validator offers another option for checking your code.  The Validator is actually checking the HTML itself to see if it meets the standards for HTML 4.01.  Correct code is also accessible code, so this tool offers an alternative to Cynthia Says.
  • WEBAim - provides a comprehensive tools and services to expand the potential of the Web for people with disabilities

II. Step by step instructions

Note: If you start a new page using either template.htm or templatelower.htm provided in the mini-web, the accessibility code lines are already in place and you will not need to pursue the following steps.

If your page has a "leftmargin" problem, you can copy and paste the following code in the head of your page.

<style type="text/css">
body {margin-left: 30px}

You will also need to find the "leftmargin" attribute in your page, and delete it.

 Alt tags for form elements

Following is source code drawn from a working form example on the Friends page:
The additional code is highlighted in red below in the first line.   In general, place your alt tag before the "type =" code.

<input name="Option_Benefactor ($1000-5000)" alt="benefactor" type="checkbox">
Benefactor ($1000-5000)<br>
<input name="Option_Patron ($500-900)" alt="patron" type="checkbox">
Patron ($500-900)<br>
<input name="Option_Sponsor ($100-499)" alt="sponsor" type="checkbox">
Sponsor ($100-499)<br>
<input name="Option_Advocate ($60-99)" alt="advocate" type="checkbox">
Advocate ($60-99)<br>
<input name="Option_Contributor ($30-59)" alt="contributor" type="checkbox">
Contributor ($30-59)<br>
<input name="Option_UM Student ($10)" alt="student" type="checkbox">
University of Maine Student ($10)

Created by: Library Staff | Revised: 02/27/2014
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University of Maine
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The University of Maine
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