Applying accessibility maturity models to measure the accessibility of organizations


Gottfried Zimmermann, Nadine Auer, Verena Kersken; Stuttgart Media University, Germany


There have been a number of attempts on measuring the level of accessibility for organizations, assessing their structure, processes and products. A tool, that is increasingly used to measure and optimize processes in organizations in the last years is called “maturity model”. A maturity model comprises a series of stages and describes a desired development path for a specific object. Maturity models found their way also into the areas of accessibility. Since 2005, there have been 25 maturity models for accessibility published, 6 of them targeting specifically higher education institutions (HEI). These maturity models not only differ in their target group, but also in their structure, the number of levels that can be achieved, and the indicators (also called “metrics”), which measure the accessibility of an organization. This Educational Session will focus on both: (1) sample accessibility maturity models that form systems of metrics, and (2) individual metrics and their relevance to accessibility of organizations. Session participants will get an introduction on existing maturity models in the field and will apply a first version of a sample accessibility maturity model for HEI hands-on. In a discussion, we will talk about our experiences with the sample maturity model as well as discuss the metrics used to measure accessibility.

Expected learning outcomes

At the end of the session the participants will be able to:

  1. Describe structures and functions of maturity models
  2. Identify existing accessibility maturity models
  3. Identify candidate metrics for an accessibility maturity model for HEI
  4. Apply a sample maturity model on the own organization
  5. Discuss experiences of the application