Office of Institutional Equity names Web Accessibility Award recipients

June 16, 2011

The Office of Institutional Equity has announced the recipients of the 2011 Web Accessibility Awards: the National AgrAbility Project website and the ALT508 Image ALT Text Checker tool.

Purdue’s Web Accessibility Awards were initiated this year as a way to recognize colleges, schools, departments, programs and units that have made great strides in meeting or exceeding the University’s standards for accessible Web design while demonstrating excellence in design and communication. The award of $1,000 will be given to two winners each year during the four-year implementation of Purdue’s Web Accessibility Policy. 

The National AgrAbility Project website at was selected for meeting the University’s standard for accessible Web design, being user-friendly and having a pleasing visual design. In addition, YouTube videos offered on the website are closed captioned, and a user may request text transcripts of Web-based training modules. The nomination committee praised the National AgrAbility Project website as an excellent example of how visual design and Web accessibility can work together to provide information to all users in an efficient and well-designed manner. 

Produced by the ITaP Informatics group, the ALT508 Image ALT Text Checker is a free tool that was selected for its ability to provide a clean and concise report for developers to use in reviewing all images and associated alt tags for an entire site.  Although most tools will scan a site for the existence of alt tags, there is no assurance that these alt tags are accurate or necessary. ALT508 Image ALT Text Checker takes this a step further by displaying a visual report of images next to their associated alt tags. 

By displaying images and their alt tags together, this tool often makes it easier to determine whether the alt text is appropriate for the image. This free tool can be found at and is available for download to anyone with a Purdue career account.

The monetary award of $1,000 will assist the recipients in furthering their efforts in accessible Web design. The awards are sponsored by a grant from Google and the Office of the Vice President for Ethics and Compliance.