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To help vendors develop more accessible websites and web apps for the NZ Government, the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) is offering a free workshop. Front-end developers working in the private sector are invited to learn about ARIA and how to build accessible user interface components.

Jason Kiss (Senior Advisor in Digital Engagement at DIA) will be leading the workshop. Jason is the NZ Government's specialist in the NZ Web Standards and web accessibility.


The workshop is divided into two sessions, with a short break in between. During the workshop, we’ll review how HTML5, browsers, accessibility APIs, and assistive technologies work together. Then we’ll discuss what ARIA is and what it brings to the mix, including:

  • HTML5 semantic elements and ARIA landmarks
  • aria-label, aria-labelledby, aria-describedby
  • focus management, tabindex, keyboard access.

We’ll also take a closer look at how ARIA can be applied to improve the accessibility of some common UI interaction patterns and widgets, such as:

  • hiding/showing and expanding/collapsing content
  • tabbed interfaces, accordions, carousels
  • modal dialog windows
  • menus.


We’ll be working through actual code examples in the workshop. Bring a laptop so that you can play along.

For Windows, consider pre-installing the NVDA screen reader and AViewer.

For Mac OS X, why not get a little familiar with VoiceOver and install the Accessibility Inspector that comes with XCode.

If Gnome/Linux is your flavour, give Orca a whirl, and think about getting Accerciser.

When and where

Tuesday 2 August 9.30am – 12.00pm Springload, Level 7, Hope Gibbons Building, 7 Dixon Street, Wellington

Space is extremely limited, so please RSVP.


Many thanks to Springload for prompting this workshop and providing the venue and morning tea.

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