Web site accessibility for disabled users is now enshrined in UK law under the SENDA (Special Educational Needs and Disability Act, Disability Discrimination Act Part 4) legislation of 2001. Under the terms of this act it is illegal for a higher education institution to treat people with disabilities less favourably or to fail to make reasonable adjustments to meet their needs.
The Mathematical Institute strives to make all of its electronic resources as accessible as possible to all of our users, regardless of their particular circumstances. If you find any problems in accessing information from our site, please contact the Webmaster.
The main site was imported into a content management system (drupal) in the summer of 2007 which aims to ensure good accessibility.
There is a top level links navigation bar at the top of each page. Those items provide drop down menus that provide quick access to the top two levels of navigation.
Below the top level links drop down menus navigation bar there is a 'breadcrumb trail' showing where you are within the main logical structure of the site and links to climb back up through the levels of the site.
Where relevant pages have a set of navigation links on the left relevant to the current location.
At the top right of every page is a search box in which to type a general search query. The search uses google.
This site does not use frame to organise the layout of the pages. Layout tables are only used sparingly.
Each page has a navigation panel at the left as explained above.
At the foot of every page body is information stating when the page was last update, and a link to a contact form for the page owner if necessary.
The footer area of every page contains links to the copyright, cookies and accessibility statements.
Presentation of the site content is achieved by using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). We use relative font sizes to allow the end user control over site text size. The choice of font for the main text is typically left to the individual via their browser defaults.
The top navigation bar also has font size buttons to allow the user to easily increase and decrease the font size or return to the default setting.
Images used in this site should include descriptive ALT attributes. Where decorative graphics are used these may include null ALT attributes instead.
We try to ensure that link text makes sense out of context and that it accurately describes the pages it points to. You can use the tab key on your keyboard (as well as your mouse) to move from consecutive link to link.
All pages should explicitly declare the default language using a
lang attribute in the
html tag. If some parts of a page are in another language then the
lang attribute of that element should be appropriately set.
The majority of the site is written in HTML 5.
Non HTML formats
Where links are to non HTML documents this is typically indicated in the text or link name. Such documents are typically PDF files. When generating such files we try to make sure they are viewable in all viewers. If you experience a problem with a specific document please use the contact link at the bottom of the page to let the page owner know so they can try to retify the situation.
Mathematical Documents and Videos
Course material documents (such as lecture notes, problems sheets), are usually provided as PDF output, which has been created from a LaTeX source code. Making mathematical PDF documents suitable for a screen reader is problematic, so where appropriate we provide the LaTeX source code to individual staff and students, if that will better address their needs.
Provision of closed-captioning for video material (e.g. lecture capture content) in advance is not done due to the disproportionate cost, however discussions are had where there is a need for our students or staff and appropriate arrangements and adjustments agreed.
More information about some of the challenges and approaches to creating accessible mathematical documents are available on this LMS Mathematics and Accessibility page.