Analyzing Internet Accessibility in Regards to Engineering Ethics

Tickle, Siddharth, School of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Virginia
Neeley, Kathryn, EN-Engineering and Society, University of Virginia

Over 90% of websites contain some sort of accessibility issue according to the web content accessibility guidelines. My technical project report reviewed my experience as a software engineer intern at Qualtrics, a company that creates cloud-based solutions for experience management. I learned how to understand the customers’ needs, create a low-cost wireframe, get feedback, and develop a final product. Throughout this process, I was surprised by the lack of attention focused on the accessibility of my project, especially at a company that focuses on customer experience. Thus, I focused my research on how poor accessibility can be improved by viewing it through the lens of the Americans with Disabilities Act. If a company like Qualtrics is in this state, other competitors must be at the same or lower coverage level of disabled users. My STS Research Paper discerns how poor accessibility causes inequity on the internet and how the ADA can be used to frame improvements to it. This experience complemented my STS research as I understood how accessibility is not prioritized in practice.

BS (Bachelor of Science)
software engineering, design thinking, design ethics, accessibility
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