Accessibility

Our commitment and legal obligations 

This Accessibility Statement is provided by University of the Arts London in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 and we also recognise our obligations under the Equality Act 2010. 

Workflow and Mahara

Workflow is University of the Arts London’s e-portfolio platform. Workflow uses Mahara.org an open source platform built and developed by Catalyst. Mahara’s goal is to be fully accessible and usable for all users regardless of ability.

Accessibility of Mahara

Mahara has a good level of accessibility when it comes to viewing and creating content, some of the latest accessibility improvements include:

  • Keyboard-accessible controls and elements
  • Descriptive alt text for images
  • Properly labelled graphical links and controls
  • Use of focus management
  • Text descriptions for screen reader users

The above accessibility features can be found in both pages for creating and editing content and pages for viewing content. 

You can find out more on the Mahara wiki accessibility pages.

How accessible is Mahara?

Most of the administration pages include the accessibility improvements mentioned above. However, since administration is the most complex part of Mahara, there are still some pages that may have issues.  

Catalyst are continuing to work on accessibility and aims to address these issues in future versions.  If you experience any accessibility problems, please report them using the guidance provided in the section ‘Reporting accessibility problems with this website’ below. 

Accessibility of Workflow

We aim to ensure that teaching, learning and assessment resources built in and/or uploaded to Workflow are fully accessible to all users. Mahara.org can only test built-in pages and the basic structure of portfolio pages. It remains the responsibility of content creators to ensure the content they upload is accessible. 

Workflow is not compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard. The non-accessible sections are listed below.

System Level issues

Workflow is a complex platform with customised and bespoke parts. Its code is always evolving and from time to time, new modules (e.g. plugins, code patches) are added to the system and others are removed.

Content Level issues

Content and resources hosted on Workflow have been added by our user community that is made up of thousands of staff and students. As such the accessibility of content will vary between Workflow sites. Although our aim is for teaching, learning and assessment resources built in and/or uploaded to Workflow to be fully accessible to all users, it is not possible to guarantee this.

You may access third party content and resources that reside outside of Workflow. These may be hosted or supported by the University or may be third party services or websites. Consequently, we can’t guarantee that every part of UAL’s Workflow is accessible. We view accessibility as a process of continuous improvement in response to our users and the wider technical environment and we aim to do better.

At the time of writing this statement, the following system and content issues are of greatest impact to users.

Navigating Workflow and its content

Navigation by Headings

Some Workflow created content is missing headings and when used, headings may not be in a logical order

Navigation by Links

Some links in Workflow created content do not follow best practice e.g. “click here” is used as link text.

Navigation by Keyboard

Some Workflow areas have been set up using layouts that contain hidden and collapsed content. The hidden and collapsed content cannot be searched from the main page in which they are located. Users must navigate to specific sections to be able to search for specific content. This content is accessible but keyboard only navigation requires additional steps to reach and search the hidden and collapsed content.

Audio visual content

  • Some images do not have alt text or where alt text has been provided it may not be meaningful
  • Video content does not have captions or transcripts
  • Audio content may not have an accompanying transcript

Issues with Text

  • Office file formats such as MS Word documents, MS PowerPoint slides and PDFs may be poorly formatted and may not be accessible.
  • Some hyperlink text does not follow best practice and may not make sense when read on its own e.g. “click here”
  • Some resources/files uploaded to Workflow areas do not have meaningful names to aid navigation and discovery of content e.g. PowerPoints files may be named “Slides.ppt” providing no indication of the topic or information covered.

Archived/legacy Workflow areas and content

The Accessibility Regulations don’t require us to fix Workflow area content including Word, PowerPoint and PDF documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services. We will not retrospectively fix accessibility issues in these documents but we will address specific issues on request. If you have any difficulties and need content in an alternative format, please contact us and we will be happy to help you.

We will focus our efforts on ensuring that Workflow and new content that is created in and uploaded to it is as accessible as possible going forward.

How we tested this website

At the time of writing this accessibility statement UAL Workflow has not been independently tested for accessibility.

Accessibility information included in this statement has been draw from in-house testing. This includes examining a random selection of pages from across the University’s provision using a range of accessibility evaluation tools including:

This testing took place in September 2019.

What we are doing to improve accessibility

We aim to improve accessibility by:

  • issuing enhanced guidance
  • staff training
  • provision of and increased use of accessibility checklists and audits of Workflow areas.

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

Contact your course tutor or email dlsupport@arts.ac.uk if you need information on this website in a different format like accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille. We will pass your request onto the relevant team and work with them to get you the information in a format that is accessible to you.

Issues and complaints 

To report an issue with Workflow or to make a complaint, please also contact dlsupport@arts.ac.uk.

We will forward your email to the relevant team and they will reply as soon as possible.

We aim to provide you with an initial response within 2 working days and will provide clear information about how we will deal with your enquiry.

If you feel we have not answered your complaint satisfactorily, please contact us again at dlsupport@arts.ac.uk . We will escalate your complaint to David White, Head of Digital Learning, who will work with the team who provides the service/content to get you a response.

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).

This statement was prepared on 27th August 2019. It was last updated on 17th September 2019.