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Accessibility

Changing text size

There are two ways in which you can increase or decrease the text size of the ifs ProShare website.

  1. Through the 'View' menu of your web browser:
    1. Click 'View' in the browser's top bar;
    2. Select the size to suit (for example 'Largest' as shown in the image)
    3. All the text within ifs ProShare will now change but the site will function in the same manner as before. To return to the original font size select 'Medium' in the same way as before.
    Image demonstrating how to alter the on-screen text size in the Internet Explorer web browser
  2. Via the text size icons located at the top right of every ifs ProShare web page.

Clicking on the icons causes the text size of ifs ProShare to change:

The current text size is: normal

High contrast colour scheme

The normal contrast colour scheme can be triggered by selecting this icon: Set the colour scheme to normal contrast

More about accessibility

What is web accessibility?

Web accessibility means ensuring that web pages are user-friendly for anybody that may visit a site, whatever their ability or disability. Elements that are considered include: the layout of the content; the use of language and reduction of jargon; the use of colours and colour schemes; browser reliance or browser independence as well as the ability to adapt to alternative technologies such as screen readers.

Why make a website accessible?

According to W3C, the governing body of the World Wide Web, up to 20% of people are affected by some form of disability. A significant portion of people with disabilities can benefit from web sites specifically designed to be more accessible. Even something as simple as the aging process, which affects us all, can make using websites significantly harder. Poor contrast between colours, small typefaces and unintuitive menu systems can make a website unreadable.

The 1995 Disability Discrimination Act (see below) has made it a legal requirement for companies and organisations to ensure that everyone can access their services and information. This Act directly applies to websites and Internet services.

Who are the W3C?

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) both develops and promotes standard technologies for the Web. On the W3C Web site, you will find information about Web technologies such as the Extensible HyperText Markup Language (XHTML), (most common type of web markup language), Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), W3C's mission and how W3C operates.

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) recommends using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) for visual formatting. CSS is a simple mechanism for adding style (e.g. fonts, colours, spacing) to Web documents. They also make pages more accessible to people with low vision, and by sharing the style sheets, will often shorten page download times for all users.

Why are CSS useful to me?

The website uses Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to enhance the presentation. CSS gives readers more control over the look and layout of XHTML & XML documents. Using CSS, you can control:

  • fonts, font sizes, and font colors
  • line spacing and length
  • margins and indents
  • background images and colors
Are there laws which affect web design?

Yes, there are two. These are the "Special Educational Needs and Disability Act" , and the "1995 Disability Discrimination Act".

What is the "Disability Discrimination Act"?

The "Disability Discrimination Act" (DDA) aims to end the discrimination which many disabled people face. This Act gives disabled people rights in the areas of:

  • employment
  • access to goods, facilities and services
  • buying or renting land or property

Items of legislation that apply to web site design are found within the access to goods section of the legislation and include the following:

  • since December 1996 it has been unlawful to treat disabled people less favourably than other people for a reason related to their disability; since October 1999
  • reasonable adjustments have had to made for disabled people, such as providing extra help or making changes to the way they provide their services
What is the "Special Educational Needs and Disability Act"?

The "Educational Needs and Disability Act" became law on 11th May 2001. As a result, discrimination against disabled students in the provision of education, training and other related services is unlawful.

Glossary of Terms used in this Page:

Browser Reliance - Often designers will create a website that requires a specific type of browser. This is not website accessibility, as it makes the assumption that all visitors will view the site using the same browser, for example Internet Explorer or Netscape.

Browser Independence - This occurs when a website does not rely on a specific type of browser to ensure it is properly displayed.

Screen Reader - This is a software package which reads the content of a monitor screen aloud for PC users. A properly developed webpage should read aloud exactly the same as it is viewed on screen. A screen reader can be a generic programme such as Jaws, which reads all of the screen content or just a web browser which works only on webpage's.

Web Markup Language - is the type of 'coding' used to format the content of a webpage, without markup language, this page would not appear as it does. The most common type of markup language is XHTML.

XHTML - stands for Extensible HyperText Markup Language and is the most common form of markup language. XHTML has been used to markup this page.

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