Looking to upskill? The Professional Certificate in Web Accessibility (PCWA) online course offers graduates an internationally recognised qualification encompassing web, digital and apps accessibility. It also recently picked up an award from the respected Knowbility group in the USA as being a ‘Hero of Accessibility’ in the ‘Educational Achievement’ section of their 2017 Honours List.
Listen to a recent interview where Senior PCWA Course Lecturer and global accessibility expert, Dr Scott Hollier, talks with Media Access Australia’s Philip Jenkinson about what the PCWA course covers, along with the benefits of studying it, in a fascinating podcast.
The Professional Certificate in Web Accessibility (PCWA) course is studied online, part-time, over six weeks and is jointly run by the University of South Australia and Media Access Australia. It teaches Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 (and covers the new 2.1 update), Section 508 in the USA, along with practical, hands-on access skills you can put into action the moment you learn them.
The PCWA course recently won a coveted award from US accessibility group, Knowbility, as part of their Heroes of Accessibility honours list for 2017. The course was co-winner of the ‘Educational Achievement’ category, which recognises exceptional efforts across the world that help communities at large to understand and successfully apply accessibility techniques in websites and apps.
Now more than ever before, the digital landscape is as vital to navigate as the physical landscape. Yet many of the people building it don’t really know what accessibility is, or how best to implement it effectively. The PCWA is designed to rectify that — with direct relevance to a wide variety of developer, design, content, and project management job roles in the web and digital space.
“One of the things we stress in the PCWA is to make sure that people who do the course have a really good understanding as to what the accessibility issues are for people with disability, before we get into the more technical requirements,” says Senior Lecturer, Dr Scott Hollier.
“In the sense of myself being legally blind, and other people with disability, it’s good to start the course with that understanding of the user experience,” adds Dr Hollier. “And then lead onto the more technical things after that, including the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, the new WCAG 2.1 update that’s coming in 2018, and a whole lot more.”
“And as we’ve become more reliant on mobile — generally people use devices more than standard computers to access online content, be it through mobile web browsers or apps — it’s important that the course also caters for that need,” explains Dr Hollier. “So we do look at the ability to understand how WCAG applies to smartphones, and in addition, a big focus of WCAG 2.1 is around how it applies to apps and mobile devices.”
Over 500 people have completed the PCWA course since it began in 2011. Students receive instructed learning and practical hands-on training so that the principals of accessibility can be incorporated into your work practices. To find out more check out the PCWA course page and watch the PCWA highlights video.
The next intake of the course runs from 18 September to 27 October, with the cut-off date for enrolment being 5pm, Tuesday 12 September 2017. For a group booking or for your employer to be invoiced for you to take the course email Media Access Australia directly. Or you can self-enrol in the PCWA online via a link from the PCWA web page, from 31 July 2017.