Our approach to website accessibility testing

We use a number of different approaches to testing the accessibility of our website. This includes manual testing using assistive technology such as a screen reader as well as automated testing.

Our main approach to accessibility testing of the central University website is as follows:

We use an automated testing tool to batch process a sample of pages. This includes all the different page or content types and for small sites this will include all pages. 

Once a year we run a significant manual test on a sample of pages including the University Website Publishing team website and a number of key pages that have a large number of website visitors.

Initial audit details

This website was last tested by the Learning, Teaching and Wed Services team as part of Information Services in May 2022 using the Microsoft Edge (101.0.1210.39), Mozilla Firefox (91.9.0esr) and Google Chrome (101.0.4951.64) browsers. Although Internet Explorer remains one of the most commonly used browsers by disabled people, specifically due to its accessibility features and compatibility with assistive technology, it is not supported by the Design System and therefore not compatible. For details on browser use, please refer to a UK government survey:

UK Government assistive technology browser survey.

However, Edge, Firefox and especially Chrome are considered the popular browsers when using a screenreader, as confirmed by current world-wide usage levels for different screen readers and browsers:

Most recent WebAim annual survey.

The aforementioned three browsers have been used in certain questions for reasons of breadth and variety.

 We tested: 

  • Spellcheck functionality
  • Scaling using different resolutions and reflow
  • Options to customise the interface (magnification, font, background colour et. cetera)
  • Keyboard navigation and keyboard traps
  • Data validation
  • Warning of links opening in a new tab or window
  • Information conveyed in colour or sound only
  • Flashing, moving or scrolling text
  • Operability if JavaScript is disabled
  • Use with screen reading software (for example, JAWS)
  • Assistive software (TextHelp Read and Write, ZoomText, Dragon NaturallySpeaking)
  • Tooltips and text alternatives for any non-text content
  • Time limits
  • Use with inbuilt mobile screen reading software: iOS VoiceOver and Android TalkBack  and other mobile phone accessibility functionality
  • Ability to view in portrait and landscape mode


Examples of sample pages for website testing

As the website is still in the process of being built this is currently the following: 

  • Accessibility statement
  • Accessibility improvements
  • This current page