Universal Access in the Information Society

, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 191–206 | Cite as

Are urban public libraries websites accessible to Americans with Disabilities?

  • Yan Quan LiuEmail author
  • Arlene Bielefield
  • Peter McKay


This paper examines to what extent the 129 members of the Urban Public Libraries Council meet the Section 508 standards for accessibility under the Rehabilitation Act, the minimum acceptable standard for accessibility under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Using an HTML evaluation tool, WAVE, the HTML coding of the libraries’ homepages was evaluated according to the Section 508 criteria for accessibility. After one-to-one deep examination to determine the accessibility of the library websites, the results tended to mirror other studies showing that most library websites have some coding deficiencies that limit the accessibility of the websites. Notably, only 7 of the 122 libraries that were surveyed had no Section 508 errors present with their homepages.


Accessibility Public libraries Urban libraries Policy Disability Impairment ADA Compliance Section 508 Assistive technology Universal usability 

Supplementary material

10209_2017_571_MOESM1_ESM.xlsx (82 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (XLSX 82 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Information and Library ScienceSouthern Connecticut State UniversityNew HavenUSA
  2. 2.Tianjin University of TechnologyTianjinChina

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