Skip to content Exit mobile menu

St Mary’s Moodle (VLE) Accessibility Statement 

This accessibility statement applies to the website:  

This website is run by St Mary’s University and hosted by CoSector. We want as many people as possible to be able to use this website. For example, that means you should be able to:  

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts  
  • zoom in up to 300% without the text spilling off the screen  
  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard  
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software  
  • listen to most of the website using a screen reader (including the most recent versions of JAWS, NVDA and VoiceOver) 

We’ve also made the website text as simple as possible to understand. AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.  

How accessible this website is

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible as described in the Non-accessible content section.   

Feedback and contact information

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of the applications. If you find any problems not listed on this page, need information on this website in a different format (such as an accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille)  or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, please email  

We’ll consider your request and get back to you in ten working days. 

Enforcement procedure  

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the ‘accessibility regulations’). If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).  

Technical information about this website’s accessibility  

St Mary’s University is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018. 

Compliance status

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances listed below.   

Non-accessible content  

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.  

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations  

Moodle is an Open Source Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) which means that some aspects of its accessibility are outside of our immediate control. The Moodle known issues page identifies reported issues with Moodle accessibility and the Moodle accessibility standards page outlines the design principles behind it.  

We list below further areas within Moodle that we know are not fully accessible.  

Platform – issues we have identified with the St Mary’s Moodle platform e.g. navigation  

  1. Banner menu items do not receive focus indication. This may make it difficult for keyboard users to correctly navigate this menu. This fails WCAG 2.4.7 Focus Visible (AA).  
  2. The Skip to content function does not work correctly. This fails WCAG 2.4.1 Bypass Blocks (A)
  3. Across Moodle a user profile icon is used, these elements are decorative in purpose but still included in keyboard navigation and do not have appropriate descriptive alt text. There are also some other images such as banners and separators that are not correctly described. This fails WCAG 1.1.1. Non-text Content (A).  
  4. There are various contrast issues across Moodle in particular “greyed out” wording including some status messages, and some red wording used for notification. This fails WCAG 1.4.3 Contrast Minimum (A).  
  5. Across Moodle there are some links that are not clearly described. This fails WCAG 2.4.4 Link Purpose (A).  
  6. On some pages there are invisible headings which may not be clear in purposes to users but are used for page structuring. These may be confusing to some users but can be ignored. This fails WCAG 2.4.6 Headings and Labels (AA) and 2.4.7 Focus Visible (AA).  
  7. On some pages the back button moves the user back to the My Modules page rather than the page the user was previously on, as it does for other pages. This fails WCAG 3.2.3 Consistent Navigation (AA).  
  8. Some content such as menu items or messages are list items but are not correctly coded to all be part of the same list as would be expected. This fails WCAG 1.3.1 Info and Relationships (A) and 4.1.1 Parsing (A).  
  9. On some pages there are Open / Close all elements which control expandable content sections on the page. These are not controllable with keyboard. This fails 1.4.13 Content on Hover or Focus (A) and 2.1.1 Keyboard (A).  
  10. Users should be aware that when clicking on the “View my feedback” link this takes the user to a page titled “Grades”. This fails WCAG 2.4.4 Link Purpose (A).  
  11. Feedback tables can be confusing for screen reader users as columns are currently read out twice each. This fails WCAG 1.3.1 Info and Relationships (A) and 4.1.1 Parsing A). We are doing the following to fix this issue…  
  12. Feedback pages have controls to move through assessments. These control links are not correctly descriptive. This fails WCAG 2.4.4 Link Purpose (A).  
  13. The cancel function on Forums pages is not accessible to screen reader users because the label associated with the X (cross) symbol is not descriptive of its purpose. This fails WCAG 1.3.3 Sensory Characteristics (A), 2.4.6 Headings and Labels (AA) and 4.1.2 Name, Role, Value (A).  
  14. The events key on the Calendar page is not easily understandable for screen reader users as the purpose of each event toggle option is not clear and these controls are described as links which does not identify that these are actually toggle options. This fails WCAG 4.1.1 Parsing (A) and 4.1.2 Name, Role, Value (A).  

Disproportionate burden  

At this time, we have made no claims of disproportionate burden.  

Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations  

Portable Document Format (PDF) and other documents  

Some of our PDFs and Word documents are essential to providing our services. By September 2020, we plan to either fix these or replace them with accessible HTML pages.  

Content – issues we have identified with content uploaded to Moodle e.g. PDF (Portable Document Format) document accessibility  

  1. Documents have tables that don’t have any headers - this poses navigational difficulties to screen reader users who may find it difficult to make sense of information in tables that are not correctly marked up.  
  2. Documents missing titles - a PDF title is a more descriptive and meaningful version of the file name. PDF titles are often visible in the PDF window or tab which makes it easier to distinguish multiple PDFs (Portable Document Formats) (Portable Document Format) before diving in.  
  3. Documents contains images without a description - this means that visual elements are not described in a meaningful way and are therefore inaccessible non-visually.  
  4. Documents have contrast issues - as with the website certain elements within some documents do not have sufficient contrast. This can affect the experience of all users who may find it difficult to read lower contrast areas.  

The accessibility regulations do not require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services. For example, we do not plan to fix historical meeting minute documents published before 23 September 2018. Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish will meet accessibility standards. 

Intranet content    

Under the regulations intranet and extranet content are exempt from compliance deadlines until such time as they are substantially revised. It is believed that the content of the Moodle (VLE) has not met the criteria for substantial revision since the regulations came into force and as such this content will be expected to comply as of the next substantial revision to the platform. 

What we’re doing to improve accessibility  

We will continue to work with the supplier to address the accessibility issues highlighted and deliver a solution or suitable work around.  We have developed new training and materials for our staff that cover how to create accessible content for the web and we are continuing to work through our documentation and guidance to make it more accessible (including captioning video materials). 

We will continue to monitor the system’s accessibility and will carry out further accessibility testing as these issues are resolved. However, due to the complex nature of the information displayed it may not be possible to resolve all accessibility issues. If this is the case, we will ensure reasonable adjustments are in place to make sure no user is disadvantaged.  

We plan to have resolved the majority of accessibility issues by the next upgrade scheduled for February 2021. We are also bringing in a new plugin for Moodle to improve the accessibility of documents on the VLE. 

How we tested this website 

This website was last tested on 3 September 2020. The test was carried out by All Able Ltd. All pages of the website were tested along with a sample of the documents from each area of the website. 

Tools Used 

This audit was conducted using a range of assistive technologies that support users with a range of access needs. The tools used to conduct this audit were: 

  • Chrome 83.04.4103.116 
  • Microsoft Edge 44.18362.449.0 
  • NVDA (Non-Visual Desktop Access) screen reader 2019.2.1.18844 
  • Axe Beta accessibility checker 
  • Windows and IOS magnifiers 
  • Windows High Contrast Modes 
  • Internet Explorer and Chrome browser settings including magnification and text size changes 
  • No styles views 
  • Keyboard control 

Preparation of this accessibility statement  

This statement was prepared on 23 September 2020. It was last reviewed on 23 September 2020.