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Accessibility statement

Introduction

We believe that the web should be an open, inclusive and fair space for all. By designing and building the Plymouth Marjon University website progressively we have ensured that all users have access to a consistent experience, regardless of technology or network conditions.

This website was developed in line with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 AA. By identifying the core functionality and ensuring that it is available using the simplest technologies and building accessible user interfaces, it ensures that everyone has equal access.

Whether though sight, hearing or touch; is user-friendly, this website is easy to comprehend and robust and accessible across devices from mobile to the largest of desktops.

 

Developed for web accessibility

Navigation and Buttons

1. The same primary, secondary and tertiary navigation is repeated on all pages appearing in the same place each time, with the same functionality, essential to make navigation predictable and consistent.

2. Interactive elements have touch points no smaller than 45px square.

3. User interface components repeat using the same labels each time.

4. Signposting has been designed with clear titles and call to action buttons.

Content

1. Content appears and is operated in predictable ways.

2. The page design is based on a 12 column grid, ensuring reusable modules align, making content navigation fluid and understandable.

3. Paragraph text is set at 18px, 2px bigger than WCAG guidance for improved legibility.

4. Text line length has been restricted to a maximum width of 66.6% of the content area width to avoid hard-to-read line lengths.

Colour

1. The contrast ratio between text and its background is at least 4.5 to 1 (conformance level AA.)

2. The existing Marjon colour palette remains untouched however where necessary, larger fonts are used to read at lower contrast.

3. We have avoided using colour alone to make critical information understandable.

Images

1. Full browser width images have been avoided, resulting in faster page load.

2. 16:9 or square format images have been used to ensure a consistent and predictable page layout.

3. Images with text overlays have been avoided, other than the main hero image on the home page, which has been made accessible by ensuring a suitable and minimum contrast.

Forms

1. Form design has been given extra attention to improve accessibility including clear labelling and browser default inputs, selectors, radio buttons, check boxes and buttons.

2. Forms have ‘steps’ so users can understand where they are in the process of submitting information.

Embedded third party content

1. Embedded widgets from Twitter and YouTube have been mainly left untouched, allowing for their already accessible code and UI to perform correctly and accessibly.

2. Video transcripts options are available on videos and are displayed in a clear and accessible way.

Other considerations

  1. Auto-scrolling has been replaced with a ‘snap’ action, avoiding the web page moving
  2. Colour - The user has options to change the display of the website to various ‘Dark’ or ‘Light’ presets.
  3. Fonts - The user has options to change the display fonts to Arial, Comic San, Courier New and Verdana are available, but also a specifically styled font suitable for visitors with dyslexia called Open Dyslexia.
  4. Font size and spacing - Options are provided to increase/decrease font size, letter-spacing and line-heights.
  5. Option to reset any accessibility settings made by user.
  6. Accessibility settings made by the user are saved in their cookies for future visits to the website.

 

Accessibility tools

The website has additional accessibility options, enabling visitors to change display colours, fonts, text sizes and text spacing.

Testing

Conformance evaluation of web accessibility requires a combination of semi-automated evaluation tools and manual evaluation. The website was tested in the design, prototype and build stages.  

Initially a prototype was tested with eight users, all of whom had disabilities. During build conformance was tested against WCAG 2.1 Level AA. Testing spanned automated tools and manual reviews. We also checked heading structures and semantic HTML via the W3C validator here.

The website was built using modules. Separating each part of a page into either re-usable blocks or individual blocks. As each module was built, it was tested and ensured semantic HTML was being used, based upon the approved designs. The CSS used within the site is all standard CSS3, supported on all major browsers, with some fallbacks for older versions of IE. No CSS frameworks were used.

Vanilla JavaScript and jQuery were used to build the site and add additional accessibility conformance to items such as the menu, and the custom accessibility tools.

 

Web accessibility principles

Based upon the WCAG 2.1 AA guidelines, each part of the site was based upon the four foundations of accessibility conformance where applicable:

Perceiveable

  • All images have an alt tag description.
  • Where information is included visually, an alternative text description has been included.
  • Blank ALT tags have been added where the image is decorative.
  • All new videos will have captions that are synchronised with the audio via the YouTube player, as well as transcripts.
  • All pre-existing videos will have transcripts.
  • All content is in a logical order if styling is removed,
  • Colour has not been used to convey information.
  • All text has been tested against the background colour in accordance with Web AIM Contrast Checker.
  • No functions are impaired when the website is enlarged to 200%. The accessibility toolbar has a font increase button, and pages have been tested to ensure that everything is still useable
  • There are no images of text on the site.
  • The content can be viewed in landscape and portrait modes.
  • An autocomplete function has been added to forms.
  • The page content resizes to a single column with no horizontal scrolling on mobile.
  • Auto-scroll has been added to tables (where they have to be used) to ensure they are visible and do not overflow the page.
  • Line height, spacing between paragraphs and letter and word spacing can be changed without breaking anything, with the use of a browser extension or our custom accessibility tool bar.
  • Where extra content is shown or hidden on focus, it can be dismissed, interacted with (and not disappear when the user moves to it) and will stay visible until dismissed by the user.

Operable

  • All menus, links, buttons, and other controls be operated by keyboard.
  • No pages on this website have time limits.
  • No content flashes or flickers on this website.
  • Blocks of links and other interactive elements can be skipped using the ‘tab’ key.
  • Each page has a unique title that indicated its purpose and context.
  • The order makes sense when using a keyboard to move through a page, we ensured that the order of HTML on page was not altered by CSS or JS.
  • All hyperlinks use descriptive link text where possible. Title tags have been avoided where descriptive text is used to prevent duplicate screen reader announcements.
  • The website has a navigation menu and search feature, as well as a sitemap.
  • All headings and labels are clear and descriptive.
  • When using a keyboard to move through a page, links and buttons are highlighted with a yellow box and the page moves automatically if something is selected beyond the fold.
  • This website does not require several fingers or complex gestures to operate it.
  • Every field has a label linked with an input, and where necessary extra text and legends to help the user understand its purpose and use.

 Understandable

  • The language is defined as ‘English’ as defined in the HTML tag.
  • We write in plain English and website editors have been provided with writing tips.
  • Links, controls, or form fields that automatically trigger a change in context have been avoided. Where conditional fields in forms are used, radio buttons have been used with conditional content in hierarchical order.
  • The website includes consistent navigation across all pages.
  • All features with the same functionality are labelled consistently.
  • Error and verification messages on forms are helpful and easy to understand, and validation and descriptions are provided

Robust

  • The website has been coded using valid semantic HTML, CSS and Javascript.
  • Aria has been added where appropriate and tested manually and by automated tools (as above). Where relevant aria has been added via JavaScript. This is so when JavaScript is disabled via the browser, a fallback is provided that does not need those aria mark ups.
  • This website will be continuously evaluated after it has been implemented to ensure that accessibility is met and adhered to.

 

Feedback

What's not accessible?

We know some parts of this website aren’t currently fully accessible:

  • Calendars - displays and functions aren’t fully accessible.
  • Tables – the use of tables has been much reduced or excluded altogether when possible as they rely heavily on side-ways scrolling and can be clunky on screen-readers.
  • The Apply Direct application is not accessible.
  • We attempted to recreate over 200 pdf and word downloads to be accessible – while most are now fully accessible there are a number that are not. In future all new downloads will be uploaded in accessible formats.

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

If you need information on this website in a different format email marketing@marjon.ac.uk. We’ll consider your request and get back to you in five working days.

If you need information on our courses or applying to study at Marjon you can call +44 (0)1752 636890 (10am–4pm) or email admissions@marjon.ac.uk.

If you can’t view any of the maps you can call us on +44 (0)1752 636700 or email info@marjon.ac.uk for directions.

Our Contact page lists other departments you can call for information.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. If you find any problems that aren’t listed on this page or think we’re not meeting the requirements of the accessibility regulations, contact marketing@marjon.ac.uk.

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).

This statement was first published on 19 September 2019 and last updated on 19 October 2020.