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Accessibility and Usability

What is accessibility and usability?

Accessibility is the degree to which a product, device, service, or environment is available to as many people as possible. Accessibility can be viewed as the "ability to access" and benefit from some system or entity. The concept often focuses on people with disabilities or special needs (such as Web Accessibility) and their right of access, enabling the use of assistive technology.

Accessibility is not to be confused with usability, which is the extent to which a product (such as a device, service, or environment) can be used by specified users to achieve specified goals with effectiveness, efficiency and satisfaction in a specified context of use.

Accessibility is strongly related to universal design when the approach involves "direct access." This is about making things accessible to all people (whether they have a disability or not). An alternative is to provide "indirect access" by having the entity support the use of a person's assistive technology to achieve access (for example, computer screen readers).

Wheelchair at bottom of stairs

Utica Campus
Disability Office
Tamara Mariotti, ADA/504 Coordinator
Payne Hall, Room 104H
Phone: 315.731.5702

Educational Technology Services
James Lynch, Director of Educational Technology
Academic Building, Room 137
Phone: 315.792.5315

Marketing & Communications
Matthew Snyder, Director of Marketing & Communications
Payne Hall, Room 345
Phone: 315.792.5330