Web Accessibility in Higher Education: An Analysis of over 4,000 Institutions


Presented at 3:30pm in Cotton Creek II on Wednesday, November 20, 2019.



  • Jay Pope, Product Manager, Pope Tech

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 1-hr
  • Format: Lecture
  • Expertise Level: Beginner
  • Type of session: General Conference


Pope Tech tested the the top-level websites of all US universities and colleges (over 4,000 higher education institutions) using our scanning platform powered by the WAVE engine. This presentation will review interesting findings, including what were the most common errors found.


In this presentation, Pope Tech is reporting on the findings of its 2019 study on the web accessibility of American academic Institutions. Although previous projects have focused on perhaps one or a few schools, this is the first comprehensive study we are aware of to explore all degree-granting colleges and universities (public and private) in the United States.

Using open source and government lists, all United States universities and colleges were identified (the final list contained over 4,000 institutions of higher education). The top-level domain for each academic institution was identified. In order to create a robust sample of pages, each website was crawled by Pope Tech and up to 100 pages were included in the sample.

The web pages were analyzed in Pope Tech’s scanning platform using WebAIM’s WAVE Engine to detect accessibility errors.


  1. Scanned all (over 4,000) higher ed institutions up to 100 pages each.
  2. Discuss common errors across higher education in the US.
  3. Review other patterns and discuss what it means.

Disability Areas

All Areas

Topic Areas

Research, Uncategorized, Web/Media Access

Speaker Bio(s)

Jay Pope

Jay is the product manager of the Pope Tech web accessibility platform. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems from Utah State University. He is a front-end web developer by training and previously led a team responsible for hundreds of websites at Utah State University. He has helped many companies streamline their project management processes for their development teams. When not working on web accessibility Jay loves to spend time with his wife and 2.5 kids, and all things basketball are his passion.