Chapter 10: ICT Support Documentation and ICT Support Services

  • 1001 General
  • 1002 ICT Support Documentation
  • 1003 ICT Support Services

1001 General

1001.1 Scope.  The provisions of this chapter apply to ICT support documentation and ICT support services and shall apply where required by Chapter 1, or where referenced by a requirement in this document.

1002 ICT Support Documentation

1002.1 General.  ICT support documentation, where provided, that supports ICT use shall conform to 1002.

Advisory 1002.1 General.  Examples of ICT support documentation include, but are not limited to installation guides, user guides, and manuals that may come with software applications.

ICT support documentation also includes documentation provided to end-users, developers, and administrators.

The documentation covered by this section includes information about general features and accessibility features of products.

ICT support documentation may take the form of stand-alone documents or be integrated into products in the form of on-line or context-sensitive help.

1002.2 Accessibility Documentation.  Documentation covered by this section provided to users shall conform to 1002.2.1 through 1002.2.4.

1002.2.1 Built-in Accessibility Features.  Documentation shall include descriptions of the built-in accessibility features of a product.

1002.2.2 Features that Support Accessibility.  Documentation shall include descriptions of features that support accessibility, including the capability to change settings, and compatibility with assistive technology.

Advisory 1002.2.2 Features that Support Accessibility.  Accessibility documentation ensures that information about ICT accessibility features, and features that support accessibility, is available to people with disabilities.  It is important that comprehensive product information be available to users with disabilities because installation and configuration can often impact accessibility of ICT.

There also may be features of a product which are useful for accessibility, even though they may not be identified by the manufacturer as accessibility features.  Descriptions of these features are required to be included in the accessibility documentation.

1002.2.3 Explanation of System Configuration to Support Accessibility.  When ICT components are designed to be part of an integrated system, documentation shall explain how to configure the system to support accessibility.

Advisory 1002.2.3 Explanation of System Configuration to Support Accessibility.  An example of an integrated system is a DVD player and multimedia projector.  To conform to 1002.2.3, the ICT support documentation is required to explain how to configure the DVD player and multimedia projector to support the display of closed captions.

1002.2.4 Keyboard Operation.  Documentation shall provide information about operation of all features that can be accessed from the keyboard, including available keyboard commands and keyboard navigation.

Advisory 1002.2.4 Keyboard Operation.  Keyboard control of features is important to users of assistive technology.  Voice recognition, screen readers, and alternative keyboards all rely upon keyboard control of features for accessible and efficient operation.

Keyboard navigation includes support for the following:  cursor keys (up, down, left and right arrows), tab and shift-tab (to cycle through fields), enter or spacebar (to select or activate), hot keys, macros, and other keyboard acceleration mechanisms.

1002.3 Alternate Formats.  Documentation shall be available in alternate formats upon request.

Advisory 1002.3 Alternate Formats.  Manufacturers of telecommunications products are required to provide alternate formats upon request, at no additional charge.  See C104.3.2.1.

Examples of alternate formats of product support documentation include braille, large print, audio, and electronic documents.

1002.3.1 Electronic Documents.  Alternate formats provided as electronic documents shall conform to Chapter 5 (Electronic Documents) and Chapter 4 (Platforms, Applications, and Interactive Content) as appropriate.

Advisory 1002.3.1 Electronic Documents.  A best practice is to use electronic documents for alternate formats because they are convertible and can be used to generate a hard copy.  Examples of alternate formats in hard copy include braille and large print customized with the specific font size and font style requested by an end-user.

Electronic documents also can be used with assistive technologies.  Examples of assistive technologies that might be used for reading electronic documents include screen readers, refreshable braille displays, and screen magnification software.

Electronic documents have an advantage over hard copy documents because they can have interactive features.  Examples of interactive features include table of contents, index, and search functions.  Assistive technology is compatible with these interactive features.

Electronic documents provided as alternate formats may be stored and distributed in a variety of media.  Examples of these media include flash drives, CDs, and web sites.

Examples of file formats for electronic documents provided as alternate formats include HTML, RTF, word-processed documents, and properly tagged PDFs.

1003 ICT Support Services

1003.1 General.  When provided, ICT support services shall conform to 1003.

1003.2 Help Desk, Technical Support Services, and Training.  Help desk, technical support services, and training shall conform to either 1003.2.1 or 1003.2.2.

Advisory 1003.2 Help Desk, Technical Support Services, and Training.  A best practice is for information provided by help desk, technical support services, and training to take into account assistive technology commonly used with products.

Another best practice is for technical support services to develop or implement training programs about the following topics:  accessibility requirements of individuals with disabilities; methods of communication used by people with disabilities; assistive technology commonly used with ICT products; designing for accessibility; solutions for accessibility and compatibility of ICT with assistive technology, the use of people-first language, and sensitivity training concerning disability issues.

1003.2.1 Direct.  Where provided, help desk, technical support services, and training shall provide information on ICT accessibility features directly to the end user.

1003.2.2 Referral.  Help desk and technical support services shall provide information on ICT accessibility features through a referral to a point of contact and a contact method.

Advisory 1003.2.2 Referral.  The Federal Communications Commission maintains a list of contact information for telecommunications service providers and manufacturers of telecommunications products.

1003.3 Alternate Methods of Communication.  Help desk and technical support services shall provide alternate methods of communication.

Advisory 1003.3 Alternate Methods of Communication.  Manufacturers of telecommunications products are required to accommodate the communication needs of users with disabilities.  This accommodation shall be available at no additional charge to users with disabilities.  See C104.3.1.

Help desk and technical support services include but are not limited to:  agency help desks, support services outsourced by agencies, and help line assistance provided by product manufacturers and vendors.

Alternate methods of communication include both in-person and remote communication.  Examples include sign language interpreters, assistive listening systems, TTYs, real-time captioning, and telecommunications relay services, such as TTY, speech-to-speech, or video relay services.

A best practice is for help desk and technical support services to use a variety of communication technologies.  This is because people with disabilities use a variety of communication technologies in addition to using alternate methods of communication.  Examples of such communication technologies include Internet posting (such as message boards and website blogs), cellular telephones, two-way radios, e-mail, fax, postal mail, texting, and instant messaging.

1003.4 Materials Provided by ICT Support Services.  When help desk and technical support services provide documentation, materials shall conform to 1002.