Module 6: Checkpoint summary

All of the requirements and their conformance levels for this module are presented here. This summary can be used as a quick checklist for evaluating web pages.

Checkpoint 1 - HTML equivalents

Conformance: Mandatory

Non-HTML documents must have either:

  • an HTML equivalent (most preferred);


  • an accessible non-HTML equivalent (such as RTF, ODF or DOC) with a summary page (refer to Checkpoint 2 and Checkpoint 3).

    Exceptions to this include:

    For more information refer to the Exceptions in this checkpoint.

    Checkpoint 2 - Minimum accessibility requirements

    Conformance: Mandatory

    Where non-HTML documents are used, they must meet minimum accessibility requirements.

    All non-HTML document formats must:

    • provide hierarchical context for headings and text (be properly structured applying styles in Word and tags in Acrobat).
    • include correctly formatted structural elements such as a table of contents, links and bookmarks.
    • have a clear, logical and easy to follow reading order (including for example, the position of footnotes and supplementary content)
      • have text alternatives (or 'Alt text') on content images that convey the meaning of the image
      • have decorative images and repeated headers and footers removed from the reading order so that screen readers and other assistive technologies ignore them.
    • be formatted in such a way that it will be readable by people with vision or cognitive impairment (including dyslexia) e.g. use of white space, images and margins to improve scannability by breaking up the text.
    • have accessible tables with meaningful column headings:
      • tables should be used only for the purpose of setting out tabular data and not for general page layout
      • not include complex tables in non-HTML documents.
    • include hyperlinks on URLs and when referencing other parts of the document.
    • specify the natural language of the document.
    • have sufficient contrast between foreground and background colours according to Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 requirements.
    • ensure security settings do not exclude users of assistive technologies.
    • include metadata (refer to Checkpoint 8 - Metadata).

    Exceptions to this include:


    1. Non-HTML documents must open in the same window (but the file should force the browser to download the document for use with standalone applications). Refer to Checkpoint 13 of Module 1 - Launching new windows.
    2. Applying accessibility techniques to PDFs (without an HTML equivalent) may reduce risk but does not remove it as PDFs are not fully accessible.

    Checkpoint 3 - Document summary pages and sections

    Conformance: Mandatory

    Non-HTML documents must use an HTML summary page.

    Exceptions to this include instances where:

    • an HTML version already exists, providing a summary page entry point
    • the document context is provided - in-text linking should be used instead (followed by the file type and size).

    Non-HTML documents that exceed maximum file size requirements must be made available in sections. (Refer to Checkpoint 5 - File size requirements for maximum file size requirements.) These sections:

    • should be appropriate and logical within the document context, such as chapters
    • must comply with all other checkpoints of this module
    • must include a complete version of the document for printing.

    A complete version of the non-HTML document must also be provided with the following requirements:

    • the link to the complete version is placed above the list of document sections
      • it is clearly defined as a large file (e.g. over 1 MB) for offline/print purposes
      • an accessible current version of the complete document is also supplied.

    Checkpoint 4 - Document optimisation

    Conformance: Mandatory

    Non-HTML documents must be optimised for online delivery.

    Documents must:

    • only include images that are saved at 72 dpi prior to insertion
    • convert bitmap images of text into actual text
    • be set to open in the correct orientation (for all pages)
    • be created so that the pages are viewed and printed in order
    • have some hidden data and collaboration data removed (such as such as change tracking and comments)
    • have the document history removed
    • have unnecessary watermarks removed (e.g 'draft')
    • have blank pages and inside covers removed.

    Exceptions to this include:

    Certain hidden data (metadata) must be included for resource discovery. Refer to Checkpoint 8 - Metadata for what should be included.

    Checkpoint 5 - File size requirements

    Conformance: Mandatory

    Non-HTML documents must:

    Exceptions to this include:

    Right to information (RTI) documents.

    Checkpoint 6 - File types and sizes in links

    Conformance: Mandatory

    File type and size must be included in the hyperlink for non-HTML documents.

    The file type and size must:

    • be hyperlinked but styled so that it does not display as part of the link
    • must be enclosed in brackets (parentheses)
    • must be in the format (<filetype>, <numeric size> <unit of measure>) e.g. (PPT, 1.1 MB)
    • file type must be in uppercase e.g. PDF, DOC, XLSX
    • file unit must be in uppercase e.g. KB, MB, GB
    • not include an icon to represent the file type.

    The linking text must be in sentence case, not title case.


    Checkpoint 7 - Branding and writing styles

    Conformance: Mandatory

    Non-HTML documents must:

    • conform to the Queensland Government Corporate Identity and specific agency branding.
    • follow the writing styles of Commonwealth editorial style manual and specific agency style guides.

    Exceptions to this include:

    • Where the document has written by an organisation external to the Queensland Government and uses that organisation's branding or corporate identity.

    Checkpoint 8 - Metadata

    Conformance: Mandatory

    Metadata must be added to all non-HTML documents.

    The minimum metadata requirements for non-HTML documents are:

    • Title - this field must contain the full title of your document (not the document filename).
    • Subject (description) - this is a concise (i.e. fewer than 150 characters), free-text description of the content and/or purpose of the document.
    • Author - this field must contain 'Queensland Government' at a minimum.
    • Keywords - this should contain keywords and/or phrases that add value or provide alternative terms/expressions to the content, such as synonyms. Use commas (,) not semi-colons (;) to separate individual keywords and phrases.

    Exceptions to this include: