Website accessibility statement

Accessibility statements for our digital services

The accessibility statement on this page explains how accessible the University of Derby website is and how we audit it. As a University we operate a range of systems which will each have their own Accessibility Statement. Read our other accessibility statements

Using this website

This website is run by the University of Derby. We want as many people as possible to be able to use this website and are committed to ensuring digital accessibility for people with disabilities. For example, that means you should be able to:

We have also made the website text easy to understand.

We were second in the March 2021 Silktide Index of UK university websites with a score of 93%. The monthly index tests a random selection of 125 of our 5,000 pages for accessibility against Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) version 2.1. Our overall Silktide score for the full site is 94%, scoring at 96% for level A, 94% for AA and 93% for AAA. 

We have been first in the SiteMorse Index for Higher Education for user experience for seven of the last ten quarters. The index scores higher education websites in the UK for a variety of quality indicators, including for accessibility, based on a random selection of 125 of our 5,000 pages. We are the current Sitemorse Accessibility Rockstar of the Year for accessibility (and overall user experience) among UK and Irish universities, with an accessibility ranking of eight out of ten for quarter one of 2021.

AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability. AbilityNet is a UK charity that exists to change the lives of disabled people by helping them to use digital technology at work, at home or in education.

Measures to support accessibility

We are using the following measures to ensure accessibility of the University of Derby website:

We tested our website for accessibility during the design process, for example with a partially sighted student, and we carry out similar testing on the live site.

How accessible is our website?

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

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

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. Please contact us using our accessibility support form if you:

Submit an accessibility support request 

We’ll consider your request and get back to you in two working days.

Enforcement procedure

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing 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 our website's accessibility

The University of Derby is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018. This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below.

Non-accessible content

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations

There are a few instances where keyboard-only users may experience an unexpected focus order when they open up hidden content. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.3 (focus order). We are looking at a solution for this issue.

There are a few instances where keyboard-only users may not be able to access all the content, for instance within the Virtual Open Days area and in our privacy preference centre modal window. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.1.1 (keyboard). We are looking at a solution for this issue.

Keyboard-only users cannot 'skip to main content' on our Virtual Open Days pages. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.1 (bypass blocks). We are looking at a solution for this issue.

There are a few instances on our Virtual Open Days where two adjacent links point to the same destination. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (non-text content). We are looking at a solution for this issue.

Some of our PDFs and other documents published after 23 September 2018 - or published before that date but essential for administrative processes - don't fully meet accessibility requirements. We are working through these documents to ensure their content will be accessible or that an accessible alternative is available.

The main search field at the top of every page does not change appearance when selected. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.4.7 (focus visible). We are looking at a solution for this issue.

Keyboard-only users may have difficulty tabbing past the search panel at the top of each page. The search panel opens automatically when it is given focus and without any further input from the user. The panel then remains visible when it has been dismissed meaning the content behind it cannot be seen. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criteria 3.2.1 (on focus) and 2.4.3 (focus order). We are looking at a solution for this issue.

There are a number of parsing (coding) issues, including elements with duplicate attributes, which can affect accessibility technology. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.1 (parsing). We are looking at a solution for this issue.

Most of our new videos (produced after 23 September 2020) do not have audio descriptions. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.2.5 (Audio Description (Prerecorded)). We have assessed the provision of audio description at this time as a disproportionate burden. Please see the following section.

Disproportionate burden

New videos (produced after 23 September 2020) will have captions and transcripts but, for now, they will not be accompanied with synchronised audio descriptions as standard. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.2.5 (Audio Description (Prerecorded). We have assessed the provision of audio description at this time as a disproportionate burden. This is based on a number of factors, including: the large number of videos produced; the changeable nature of the content; and the resource and/or costs attached to production. This decision follows a review of audio description suppliers and our ability to create audio description ourselves. We will periodically review the market for audio description services to assess our ability to introduce audio description on our videos at a later date. In the meantime, if the closed captions and extended transcripts currently provided do not meet an individual’s accessibility requirements, an audio-described version can be made available by request for a specified video. Please complete the accessibility support form, clearly stating for which video the audio description is required. We will aim to produce the audio description file within 15 working days of receiving the request.

Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations
PDFs and other documents

Many of our older PDFs and Word documents don't meet accessibility standards. For example, they may not be marked up so they are accessible to a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (name, role value). The accessibility regulations don’t require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential for active administrative processes. Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish will meet accessibility standards.

Video captions

Some of our older videos don't have accurate edited captions or transcripts. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.2.1 (audio-only and video-only pre-recorded), 1.2.2 (captions pre-recorded), 1.2.3 (audio description or media alternative pre-recorded) and 1.2.5 (audio description pre-recorded). The regulations do not apply to recorded videos published before 23 September 2020. However, while these videos are not subject to the legislation, we have carried out an audit of all our videos and have begun a process of updating captions and adding full transcripts. Any new videos we publish will have edited captions and transcripts.

Live video

Our live video streams don't have captions. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.2.4 (captions live). We don’t plan to add captions to live video streams because live video is exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations. However, we will add captions when we embed an edited version of the video streams on our website.


Our online maps, for instance in our Virtual Open Days area, are not fully accessible for keyboard-only users. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 2.1.1 (keyboard). Some of our maps do not provide sufficient contrast for visually impaired users. This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.4.11 (non-text contrast). Our online maps are exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations. This is third-party content that is neither funded nor developed by us, nor under our control.

Additional accessibility considerations

The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) define three levels of conformance: level A, level AA and level AAA. Although our goal is WCAG 2.1 Level AA conformance, we have also applied some level AAA success criteria:

How we tested this website

This website was last tested on 14 September 2020. This involved testing a random sample of pages manually using Accessibility Insights for Web and Accessibility Insights for Windows. All our pages are also tested each week by the Silktide platform, which makes automated checks of the content on 5,000 pages against the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) WCAG 2.1 accessibility standards using automated testing techniques. Its report on 19 February 2021 found the pages to be 94% compliant on level A, 93% compliant on AA and 92% compliant on AAA.

A sample of the site has been tested by a visually impaired user.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We have a rolling programme of updating content in accordance with the guidelines set out by the WCAG. This includes:

This statement was prepared on 30 July, 2019. It was last updated on 15 March, 2021.

Campus accessibility

Please see our campus accessibility guides for detailed online access guides for our campuses and sites.

We first prepared this statement on 30 July, 2019. We are logging every change we make to this page.

  • 30 July, 2019: statement first published
  • 20 September, 2019: updated latest test and Sitemorse results and linked to new form for users to report issues
  • 14 September, 2020: updated with latest test information from Silktide, Accessibility Insights for Web, Accessibility Insights for Windows and Sitemorse quarterly results
  • 6 October, 2020: updated with information about audio descriptions on new videos
  • 19 February 2021: updated with latest information from Silktide (including the Silktide Index) and Sitemorse quarterly results
  • 15 March 2021: updated with disproportionate burden statement and latest information from Silktide