Standards and recommendations

There are a number of important standards that help improve the accessibility of web content and applications for blind and low vision people.

WCAG 2.0

The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 are the internationally accepted standard for the accessibility of web content and applications. They can equally be applied to intranet content. WCAG serve as a blueprint for many national accessibility directives.

BITV 2.0

The German Barrierefreie Informationstechnik-Verordnung (BITV) 2.0 sets the accessibility standard for web sites and other public information sources of German federal institutions. BITV 2.0 follows W3C's Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 with some minor additions.


A good foundation for accessible web content is the use of valid HTML (HyperText Markup Language). HTML5 is the latest version of HTML for the semantic mark-up of web content. While its developement has not yet been finalised as standard, HTML5 it is already being used as 'living standard' for the development of new web sites and applications.


For developers who strive to design web-based custom controls or content that go beyond the native capabilities of HTML elements, the W3C standard WAI-ARIA offers the possilbility of adding semantic markup to make these custom controls fully accessible.

Mobile Web Best Practices

The Mobile Web Best Practices 1.0 give recommendations to web developers who want to ensure that web content is well presented und usable on mobile devices. They are quite dated, having been released in 2008.

Mobile Web Application Best Practices

The Mobile Web Application Best Practices were relased in December 2010. They mostly cover technical aspects of mobile design and development, such as the use of cookies, local data storage, caching, or resource use. While not directly focused on accessibility, many of the best practices make mention of accessiblity especially where other priorities such as minimising bandwidth may jeopardise essential aspects of accessibility.