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Accessibility statement

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web accessibility statement
UPDATED
12:00am 1 Jan 1970

Using the website 

We strive to create a website that can be used by as many people as possible. We understand the importance of creating content with accessibility in mind.

This means you should be able to do the following:

  • Zoom in up to 300% without impacting the functionality of the website
  • Navigate most of the website using just a keyboard, and when tabbing through content your current location will be indicated by a clear visual change
  • Listen to most of the website using a screen reader
  • Use ‘skip to content’ links to skip over some repetitive information
  • Control the embedded media player (YouTube) to play videos
  • Access most of the website via most popular screen readers, speech recognition software or operating system speech applications.

How accessible is our website 

We know that some parts of this website are not fully accessible:

  • Some heading text, anchor links, link text and alternative text is missing or used inappropriately.
  • Some content may not be fully compatible with screen readers and you may not be able to access all content by using the keyboard alone.
  • Some content does not follow correct semantic content hierarchy and may use incorrect heading structure.
  • Older PDF, Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents are not fully accessible to screen reader software.
  • Live streams do not have captions or transcripts

What to do if you can’t access parts of the website

If you are unable to access content on our website, we will try to provide alternative formats to mitigate this. We are unable to provide content in every available format but we will aim to try and make our content as accessible as possible based on your needs. We review our available formats on an annual basis and our next review will take place in September 2021.

Requesting an alternative format 

If you require information in an alternative format, please contact our web team at graduate+@bcu.ac.uk, providing the following details:  

  • The content required
  • The issues you are experiencing and what changes you require to the format

Your email will be acknowledged within three working days and we will provide a timescale for resolution. One of the team will be assigned to provide the alternative format. They will be in direct contact with you.

Alternative formats available:  

  • Digital (online PDF) prospectus  
  • Printed prospectus (posted) 
  • Written content provided as a word document 

Please note, we are currently unable to provide content in the following formats:  

  • Videos with British Sign Language (BSL)  
  • Videos with audio description 
  • Large print documents  
  • Braille 

Reporting accessibility problems 

While we review and audit our pages frequently there may be issues that we are not aware of. If you find pages that contain accessibility issues that we have not listed above, please let us know and we will look into this.

If you find a page that isn’t accessible, please contact our web team at graduate+@bcu.ac.uk, providing the following details:  

  • The URL of the page
  • The issues you are experiencing

Your email will be acknowledged within three working days and a resolution timescale will be provided if possible. One of the team will be assigned to deal with your reported issue. They will be in direct contact with you.

If you are unhappy with the response you have received from the University about your accessibility-related issue, you can make a complaint to the University by emailing accessibility@bcu.ac.uk providing the following details:   

  • Website address
  • Details of initial contact with the university including who you contacted and the information you provided
  • Reason for escalation

Your email will be acknowledged within 1 week and we will provide details of the next steps and how the complaint will be dealt within 3 weeks.

Enforcement procedure - The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No.2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the ‘accessibility regulations’). If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).

Technical information about this website’s accessibility 

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 - AA standard, due to the non-compliances listed below.

Non accessible content

The content listed below is currently not fully accessible, we are actively working on these outstanding elements but have provide comprehensive details below.

Content Hierarchy

On some pages structural use of headings are incorrectly authored possibly leading to some confusion over the structure and outline of the content. We are implementing software improvements and training to support content authors to avoid or mitigate this issue for new content.

Repetitive text in hyperlinks

In some content the use of non-descriptive and repetitive text in closely related links can lead to confusion. We are training our content authors to avoid or mitigate this issue in new content and are working through all instances of this to resolve this issue.

Use of alternative text

Alternative text for images is not always contextually suitable for the use of the image and on occasion has been used on presentational images. We are implementing software improvements and training to support content authors to avoid or mitigate this issue.

Colour contrast

There may be some content that does not meet the guidelines for colour contrast between it and its surrounding content. We are working to update our presentation styling, provide software enhancements for content authors and provide training to avoid or mitigate this issue with new content.

Support for keyboard users

There are some sections of our site that require improvement for keyboard users. We are working to identify, review, and implement changes to improve these areas which include:

  • Main site menu accessibility
  • Page/content scrolling

Dynamic Content

Some areas such as carousels or other dynamic content may not meet accessibility standards. We are working to identify, review and improve their accessibility and/or provide alternative content where necessary.

Downloadable Content

The site makes use of downloadable content in the form of PDF, Word, Excel or PowerPoint documents. Such content is not always as accessible as it can be. We are working to make these documents as accessible as possible. Where we can't make a document accessible we aim to provide an alternative format.

Screen readers and forms

The site uses forms to assist users in submitting requests or providing information to the university through our online channels. We have identified improvements for ease of use, clarity, accessibility and visual appearance of some forms and we are working hard to improve in these areas.

Disproportionate burden

There are some areas of the website that we are currently unable to resolve without significant changes to the overall platform and infrastructure that we have in place. This includes the following:

  • Accessibility of PDFs and other documents accessed from the website

Non-compliance with accessibility regulations

Birmingham City University have a commitment to provide accessible web content. To ensure that we are making our existing content accessible and that all new content works for as many users as possible we have a roadmap in place that will allow us to continually improve our website. Some of the key milestones are provided below.

By September 2021

  • Colour contrast across all key areas
  • Keyboard accessibility issues
  • A content hierarchy including correct structural use of titles/headings
  • Clearer and less ambiguous hyperlink text minimising /avoiding repetition
  • Alternative text implemented appropriately and not included in presentational images
  • Initial and ongoing improvements to support website authors in creating accessible content

Content not within the scope of the regulations

As some of our web pages house historical, legacy content we will not be updating all of our pages as they are out of scope of the regulation. However, if you would like to receive some of this content in an alternative format we can.

How we tested

We have used a number of tools and methodologies to test the website:

  • WAVE Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool
  • SiteImprove Web Accessibility Checker
  • Manual testing including keyboard functions

Reviews

Monthly web checks will take place to monitor the accessibility of our webpages. This accessibility statement will be reviewed and updated as appropriate but as a minimum there will be an annual review of this document.

Date of publish: 22/09/2020


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