Website Accessibility Disproportionate Burden

Winston Smith made this Freedom of Information request to University of Worcester

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The request was partially successful.

Dear University of Worcester,

I have identified that you have claimed disproportionate burden under the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) Accessibility Regulations 2018, within your published accessibility statement.

https://www.worcester.ac.uk/contact/acce...

Please could you provide me a copy of all completed disproportionate burden assessments or other related documentation detailing how you reached your conclusions of disproportionate burden for each of the issues mentioned in your statement.

I would appreciate this information in a computer readable format as I use assistive technology so any format besides a scanned PDF is preferable please.

I look forward to hearing from you.
Kind Regards,
Winston Smith

Helen Johnstone, University of Worcester

Dear Mr Smith

I confirm receipt of your request for information under the Freedom of Information Act and that we will respond within the statutory 20 working days

Regards

Helen Johnstone

Helen Johnstone
Head of Governance and Regulatory Affairs
Directorate
Office: 01905 855014 | Main reception: 01905 855000 | Website: www.worcester.ac.uk

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Helen Johnstone, University of Worcester

Dear Mr Smith

Further to your request for information under the Freedom of Information Act our response is as follows:

The University of Worcester takes the accessibility of its communications very seriously. It has recently completed a detailed project to ensure that its main website is as universally accessible as possible, and compliant with the newly updated WCAG2.1 regulations.

There were many facets to this work, including ensuring that images had relevant 'alt text', adjusting contrast levels in any text displayed over images, adding captions to embedded videos, and updating many of the PDFs hosted on the website.

The only element of the website where the University deemed the investment required to make it suitably accessible represented a disproportionate burden was a small collection of 360 degree virtual tours. A number of factors informed this decision, including: the fact that the virtual tours receive a low amount of traffic; and that they are at least partly a decorative element on web pages, featuring non-essential information. The virtual tours were created by an external supplier for the University in November 2016 and are added to the relevant web pages via an iframe. No evaluation document as to whether replacing the virtual tours with more accessible versions exist, as the decision was made via meetings, conversations and telephone calls throughout the accessibility audit process.

It is the University of Worcester's intention to ensure that any additional 360 degree virtual tours that are added to the website will offer a more universally accessible experience, and that more accessible versions of the existing tours will be created in the future. In the meantime, we will continue to provide the information they contain in suitable alternative formats wherever possible, when requested. Please note that the University website also features links to a number of AccessAble guides https://www.worcester.ac.uk/life/campus-... . These provide text based descriptions of University buildings and facilities (for example our Edward Elgar building - https://www.accessable.co.uk/university-...
) and in many ways offer a comparable virtual experience to the visual 360 degree virtual tours.

I am obliged, under the Freedom of Information Act, to inform you of our complaints procedures in case you are unhappy about the way in which your request has been dealt with.
If you are unhappy with the way your request for information has been handled, you can request a review by writing to the Pro Vice Chancellor Students, University of Worcester, Henwick Grove, Worcester WR2 6AJ
If you remain dissatisfied with the handling of your request or complaint, you have a right to appeal to the Information Commissioner at: The Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF. Telephone: 0303 123 1113 – www.ico.gov.uk

Regards

Helen Johnstone

Helen Johnstone
Head of Governance and Regulatory Affairs
Directorate
Office: 01905 855014 | Main reception: 01905 855000 | Website: www.worcester.ac.uk

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