There are several good options for creating accessible forms. Decide among them using the following decision tree.

Webform using Amherst College website:

  • Use this when you don't need the form to be printed.
  • Our Amherst College website Content Management System (CMS) has the correct HTML programming to make forms accessible to screen readers and tab navigable for keyboard users. If you are using a different website or CMS, consider Google Forms or check out our further resources links provided on this page for detailed instructions about the correct HTML programming needed for accessible Webforms.
  • You are not collecting Personally Identifiable Information (PII) such as social security number or financial account numbers, medical data including insurance account numbers, or other similarly sensitive data. Student ID number is already stored in the website so that is OK to include. Sensitive data, especially PII data, must not be stored in the Amherst website.
  • Great for RSVPs, organizing groups, sign-ups and data collection that is not using sensitive data.
  • Ability to auto-fill certain fields such as Amherst user name and email address for Amherst college community logged in users.

Webform using Google Forms:

  • Use this when you don't need the form to be printed.
  • Use this if your website or Content Management System (CMS) does not have the correct HTML programming or the status of the programming is unclear to make forms accessible to screen readers and tab navigable for keyboard users.
  • You are not collecting Personally Identifiable Information (PII) such as social security number or financial account numbers, medical data including insurance account numbers, or other similarly sensitive data. Student ID number is OK to include. Sensitive data must not be stored in Google Forms.
  • Great for RSVPs, organizing groups, sign-ups and data collection that is not using sensitive data.

Webform using Qualtrics:

  • Qualtrics Survey Software also has the correct programming to make forms accessible. We have access to Amherst college licenses for using Qualtrics, submit an AskIT email request for more information.

Word fillable form:

  • Use this when you need the form to be fillable and printed.
  • You are collecting more sensitive data that can't be stored in the website.
  • It is a simple form.
  • You are getting started creating a form that will become a fillable PDF.

PDF accessible and fillable form:

  • Use this when you have a legal requirement for a printed and signed document.
  • You are collecting sensitive data that can't be stored in the website.
  • It is a complex form.
  • It is already a PDF but it is not fillable, or it is fillable but has accessibility problems such as bad tab order or other keyboard navigability issues.
  • Amherst College is using a vendor to create accessible and fillable PDF forms as this requires a lot of specialized training to do correctly. Contact the IT Help Desk at askit @amherst.edu or by phone at 542-2526 to request information about having forms remediated by the vendor.

 Below is a graphic illustrating this decision tree:

  accessible forms decision tree graphic which is replicated in text on this page

Qualtrics Forms

Use Qualtrics instructions about doing an accessiblity check on your forms before releasing your survery.

Google Forms

Google Forms Accessibility Features and Options

  • Supports screen readers.
  • Supports keyboard shortcuts. Open a list of shortcuts any time by pressing Ctrl + / (Windows, Chrome OS) or Command + / (Mac).
  • With NVDA, VoiceOver or JAWS, use application or forms mode as applicable for best results.

Google Forms Content Creators

Google Forms Content Consumers

Further General Resources for Accessible Forms