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H810 – Evaluating online learning (24.4)

November 18, 2010


Well, considering my pressured time and that the closing date is coming up, and I just experienced that there will be no extension granted, did I took a shortcut through that activity. I haven’t found the validation tool you talked about Keely, probably you can let me know where I find it. I downloaded the HTML-validatior for Firefox and Mozilla and used the markup validation service from W3C to test this page, my online resource in WordPress and my Mahara resource. These are the results.

     

  • OU – 11 errors Error Line 49, Column 49: end tag for element “h2” which is not open
  • WordPress: 19 Errors Error Line 31, Column 113: there is no attribute “sizes”, Error Line 136, Column 88: there is no attribute “scrolling”
  • Mahara: 1 Error, 5 warnings – Error Line 128, Column 7: end tag for element “DIV” which is not open, Warning Line 58, Column 85: NET-enabling start-tag requires SHORTTAG YES
  •  

What does these results tell us? Well, like you point out Graeme, it is mostly about flawed codes that programmers forget to close a tag, or similar errors. Fortunately most  browser have a good tolerance and still display everything the way it should be. If you are clueless about HTML it does indeed don’t tell you anything about accessibility and how good it is. It does not tell you anything how good a navigation is and this test does not provide any information if the tested pages would be accessible for e.g. dyslexic students.

Besides that did I found out that all the errors e.g. in WordPress are not caused by my input, but by the framework offered from WordPress that I cannot influence as blogging author.

These validation test are thus not really helpful. Did anybody requested the read&write 9Gold version? After using the validation test I could definitely give no advice if the pages would be accessible for a student with dyslexia, except I would evalute the page with my humble knowledge. My WordPress online resource, would fail with the lack of necessary instruction how to proceed as these students need a clear structure, the Mahara resource might gain the advantage with a clearer navigation and some additional instructions at the beginning. But insofar the tool bar Read&Write Gold would work  with the online resource, I don’t know.

PS. Just an update, the add-on for Firefox HTML validator, works a lot better, though it requires even more technical knowledge to interpret the results. First you can customize the tool, and I applied the highest accessibility level 3 and let it run over this page. No error, 24 warnings and 753 recommendations to accessibility contrary to my Mahara page with 0 errors, 14 warning, 418 recommendations to accessibility.The tool offers a little bit more comfort, like putting line numbers next to the source code so I can locate the errors, warnings, etc faster and it has the additional accessibility check, but besides that does that not really help 😦


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