Poster and Graphic Design Accessibility Guidelines
Present all of the necessary information you want included in your posts in as coherent and clear a manner as possible. Avoid adding unnecessary content and try not to assume prior knowledge (for example, the first time you use the phrase SU you should say student union). If you are communicating about an event, include a blurb, but separate out the vital details, such as location, date and time so that they are easy to find at a glance. If you have multiple important points to express, try spreading them across multiple images in a post (each with alt text), or to use multiple posts so important details don’t get lost.
Clear Structure of Content
If someone has the carefully comb through your posts to find the time and location for your upcoming event, the likelihood is they will get frustrated, or distracted, and choose not to attend. To avoid losing out on potential engagement with you, it is important to structure your posts in such a way that they are intuitive to most people.
At the end of all of your social media bios you should detail how someone can contact you. When possible, include your official email along with the name of the person who answers or responds to that email. If you have one, also include contact details for the Accessibility Contact (AC) or Equality Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Officer (or your organisation’s equivalent). Some people with accessibility concerns may not be comfortable asking for further information or reasonable accommodations from a general email as they do not know who will see it. Having a trusted, dedicated person to ensure the equality and diversity of the organisation is fostered in how it is run makes more people, especially marginalised people, likely to engage.
Text Formatting and Layout
The text should be a minimum font size of 12 so that people with visual impairments can read the poster.
Use easily legible fonts. Choose a font such as Calibri or Verdana. These fonts are sans-serif, which means they lack the embellishments on letters that you would find on Times New Roman for example. (If using stylistic fonts, make them larger and remember that function is more vital than artistic flare.)
Avoid italics and underlining – use bold for emphasis. Reading italic or underlined text is more difficult for people with visual impairments, dyslexia and other learning differences.
Avoid all capital letters, SUCH AS THIS, it can be challenging to read. Use bold for emphasis.
Left align the content – do not use justification.
Design and Use of Colours/Imagry
It is important that the background of your design does not impact the readability of the text. (There is either a plain, block colour background, or, if using an image, it does not obscure the text.
High Colour Contrast
All of your posters should be legible and clear, as well as having alternative text. Your poster should use accessible colours – with contrast ratio of 7 or more. This can be checked for free by online colour contrast checkers such as: Coolors Contrast Checker, WebAIM Colour Contrast Checker or Colour and font Contrast Checker) and text of minimum size 12.
Links are Labelled with Descriptive Text
Links should always be descriptive. Avoid generic link text such as: “click here” or “learn more” in favour of something more specific like: “Click here to read our more detailed FAQs”. Links need to describe the action that will take place when followed.
Naked URLs should be avoided as they are hard for screen readers to read. An example of a naked url is: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEqdumsqT0uHtyswaMUcpwl_iq_9O3bOoSxe1
Alternative (Alt.) Text for All Posters, Logos and Images
When you are posting images on social media, it’s important you add alternative text so that anyone who is using a screen reader, such as blind people, will be able to access the information in the image without being able to see it. Alternative text is a written description of whatever is in the image. Social media sites also allow you to add alt text to your images or GIFs.
In order to add alt. text on Twitter you will see the option to 'add description', on Meta/Facebook you need to click edit and then you will see the alt-text option, on LinkedIn the option comes up to add alt-text. To add alt-text for Instagram click advanced settings and then 'Write alt-text'. The alt-text for each image should be brief, but include all essential information sighted users would get from the images.
To create a CamelCase hashtag, please capitalise each word in a phrase. For example, #ThisIsAVeryLongHashtag, not, #thisisaverylonghashtag. Using CamelCase hashtags allows anyone using a screen reader, including blind people, to understand your hashtags.