Making Information Professionals Accessible

Tom Worthington FACS HLM

Director of Professional Development, Australian Computer Society

For Web Adaptability for Inclusion Conference 2007

Melbourne, 7 December 2007

We have tools and techniques for accessibility, so why aren't people using them? In August 2000 the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission found that the web site for the Sydney Olympics was to a significant extent inaccessible to the blind and $20,000 damages were awarded. The following semester, Tom Worthington, one of the expert witnesses in the case, commenced teaching accessible web design to IT and e-commerce students at the Australian National University. He presents some ideas as to why accessibility has made so little headway with information professionals and suggests what we might do about it.

Tom Worthington

Tom Worthington is an Adjunct Senior Lecturer in the Department of Computer Science at the Australian National University and the Director of Professional Development for the Australian Computer Society. He was elected a Fellow in 1999 for his contribution to the development of public Internet policy in Australia and was the first web master for the Australian Department of Defence. Tom was invited to China in 2003 to advise on design of the Beijing 2008 Olympics web site.


ACS Certification and training standards for the IT profession

ACS Computer Professional Program

The Computer Professional Program is education with a difference - workplace oriented and delivered by e-learning methods - it is real any time, any place learning. The CP Program has been developed by IT professionals for IT professionals and fills the gap between university education and work experience - so you can advance to the next step of your career. The CP Program will provide ACS Members an advantage in the marketplace and improves employment and career prospects.

From: Computer Professional Program, ACS, 2006

ACS Digital Library

Students undertaking postgraduate education need a body of research literature from their profession to work with. The ACS helps provide this with their digital library.

The ACS Digital Library provides international quality magazines, journal articles and conference papers, covering innovative research and practice in Information and Communications Technologies (ICT). This service is provided free to the ICT profession by the Australian Computer Society (ACS) as part of its commitment to ensure the beneficial use of technology for the community.

From: ACS Digital Library, ACS, 2006

Carbon Neutral Computers?



Makers of low power and carbon neutral computers make claims which will need to be tested against recognised standards. To that end the Australian Government and industry are setting up standards for efficiency, testing and certification systems. The CSIRO have sponsored a six hundred page online textbook and 30 hours courseware on sustainable development for training engineers and IT professionals. Will this level of resources be put into accessibility?

More Information

Slides for these notes are also available.

Copyright © 2007 Tom Worthington

Creative Commons License
This work by Tom Worthington is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 Australia License.

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