The Theme Accessibility Audit is designed to offer an optional theme review for themes submitted to the wordpress.org Theme Repository. Submitted themes (or theme updates) that contain the tag
accessibility-ready will undergo a further, independent, accessibility review after they have been approved for inclusion in the Theme Repository.
Themes that pass this second review successfully will be allowed to retain the
accessibility-ready tag. Authors of themes that fail will be asked to re-submit their themes without the
(Need to confirm the exact process with the Theme Review Team with regard to the most practical way to handle successful/failing themes.)
Themes that fail the accessibility review will still be approved for addition to the Theme Repository.
The accessibility audit will be carried out by a small team of expert users and developers using the following criteria:
Wherever possible, decorative images should be applied using CSS. Where it is necessary to add images to the template markup, all images MUST incorporate an appropriately populated
alt attribute. During the audit, a simple alt text decision tree will be used to determine whether images are using the alt attribute appropriately.
Theme templates should use a reasonable HTML heading structure — including the use of heading elements for page sub-sections. Heading markup must NOT be used for presentational purposes.
Links MUST avoid repetitive non-contextual text strings such as ‘read more…’ and should also also make sense when taken out of context. Bare urls must NOT be used as links.
Theme authors MUST provide visual keyboard focus highlighting in navigation menus and for form fields, submit buttons and text links. Navigation by keyboard should also be intuitive and effective,
Theme authors MUST ensure that all background/foreground color contrasts are within the level AA contrast ratio (4.5:1) specified in the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 for color luminosity. In themes where a number of color schemes are offered, only the default scheme will be assessed.
Reference: WCAG 2.0 Color Criteria
Themes MUST include a mechanism that enables users to navigate directly to content or navigation on entering any given page. These links may be positioned offscreen initially but MUST be available to screen reader users and MUST be visible on focus for sighted keyboard navigators.
Comment forms MUST have appropriate field labels and and all content within form tags MUST be explicitly associated to a form control. Post-submission responses MUST be perceivable.
Forms that include a single input (such as a standard search form) may, optionally, position the input label offscreen. Themes that incorporate non-standard forms (e.g. a contact form) will be audited using the same criteria.
Inclusion of any of the following is NOT allowed:
- The inclusion of the
tabindexattribute with the exception of negative
tabindexin specific circumstances (to be assessed on a case-by-case basis).
- The inclusion of the
- Spawning new windows or tabs without warning the user.
(Note: these could added be flagged up by the Theme Check plugin.)