Explanation of Equivalent Text Descriptions

Equivalent Text Descriptions (EqTDs) Explanation

  1. EqTD Components

    The R2D2 Center provides EqTDs for all non-text elements. We are building our EqTDs to contain three distinct levels for clarity and depth of information for the user:

    1. Brief Description— Short statement including type and purpose of multimedia information. (approximately 10 words or less)

    2. Essential Description— Concise description that explains meaning and core content of multimedia information in the context of its use. What does the creator want the audience to understand? (approximately 1 – 2 paragraphs)

    3. Detailed Description— Visual description of multimedia information with significant pictorial aspects in the context of its use; may include lay-out, colors, logos, designs, etc. as an individual with sight sees it. (may be one or several paragraphs)

    Writing Equivalent Text Descriptions (EqTDs) Posterette

  2. Equivalent Text Description Rationale

    Not all individuals have equal ability to access information in a non-text format. Non-text information displays are inaccessible if they cannot be viewed or accurately interpreted by the user. “Equivalent Text Descriptions” (EqTDs) are essential to increase accessibility of non-text information, providing meaning and clarity to inaccessible information. They supply the user with an alternative and supplemental form of information access; bringing meaning, application and clarity to inaccessible information, providing a way to expand information distribution and accessibility.

  3. EqTDs on the R2D2 Website

    For images displayed on the web, all three elements are targeted to be represented. While our new website will take time to build this full EqTD implementation, Brief Descriptions as alt text provide the foundation:

    1. The Brief Description is used in the title attribute. In a text browser, this will be displayed as a header over the Alternative Text. In a standard graphical browser, this content will be displayed as a tool-tip when the user hovers over the image.

    2. The Essential Description is used in the alt (Alternative Text) attribute. In a text browser, this will be displayed below the title in place of the image. In a standard graphical browser, this content will be displayed if the image file is missing.

    3. The Detailed Description is linked to in the longdesc attribute as well as by the image itself. The detailed description page contains a thumbnail of the image, the brief description, essential description, detailed description, and a link back to the referring page.

All of the scripts as they are built will be universally available in this central website location for all user to easily access.