Accessible content guidance
If you publish content on any of the College's online platforms or applications then you have an important role in ensuring we provide accessible content, meaning it can be used and interpreted by everyone that accesses it including those using assistive and inclusive technology. In this section of the web guide you will find everything that you need to create accessible and effective content including guidance on headings, links, images, documents, videos and more.
What is accessibility?
"The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect."
Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web. Source: World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)
Accessibility is not just about disability, it is about universality!
- It means making your website accessible to all internet users.
- It is about the inclusion and participation of people with disabilities using the web.
- There are lots of different factors that affect the way in which people navigate websites.
- Browser technology is also an important consideration - each browser displays information differently.
At Imperial our main website has been designed and built with accessibility as a consideration from the start. For example, the website works with different devices and screen sizes.
How you can make your content more accessible
Some of the most important aspects of accessibility are to do with the way people create and edit content. We have put together some guidance about how you can use these elements in an effective and accessible way. We have also created a handy accessible content checklist so you can test if your content is meeting the standards.
Guides for creating accessible content
We also have a responsibility to publish accessible documents e.g. PDFs or Word documents. You should avoid online documents where possible and use web pages as the primary way for publishing information online. View our guidance on publishing accessible documents.
Creating accessible Microsoft Office documents
We have also put together some guidance covering the main things you can do to make your Office documents more accessible.
Test your content
Following our guidance will help you create accessible content, but we would also recommend testing this using a accessibility tools.
Screen reader simulators
There are a few free screen readers out there, that we would recommend:
- Free screen reader simulator from Silktide - works with Google Chrome web browser
- NVDA screen reader - For Windows PCs only
Accessibility testing tools
Accessibility Insights for Web is a plugin for Google Chrome which will run an automated accessibility check on your pages and tell you how to carry out more extensive manual accessibility assessments.
We have put together a short course online called Making your web pages inclusive so you can learn more about web accessibility and test your knowledge along the way.
One of the requirements for the public sector accessibility regulations is that you must add a web accessibility statement to your site, detailing how accessible the site is, any areas that are not, and what you are doing to improve it.
If your content is on central supported platforms i.e. Site Manager CMS, News website or events, then this will already be covered by the College website accessibility statement. If you manage a website on another platform then you will need to add a statement.
- Read the GOV.UK accessibility blog
- AbilityNet resources for creating accessible digital content
- Understanding new accessibility requirements for public sector bodies (GOV.UK)
- Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG)
Need more help?
For further help with making your site accessible contact your Faculty web Officer