Accessibility

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Web accessibility is an inclusive practice that removes the barriers that prevent access to websites or the interaction and consumption of its content by people with disabilities. All users have equal access to information and functionality when websites and other digital platforms are properly designed, developed, edited and maintained.

SUNY Oswego is committed to ensuring accessibility of its websites, web content, and all related media, including audio and video. The information provided in these channels must be accessible as defined by The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards, and must conform to AA standards.

 

Why is accessibility important?

Improves usability for all

While approximately 10% of all web users are persons with disabilities, accessibility means making oswego.edu as user-friendly — ensuring that information is easy to find, read and use — for people of all abilities to accomplish their goal while using our digital properties.

It’s the law

SUNY Oswego’s website is required to follow specific federal law (Section 504, 508 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990) and web accessibility standards (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 AA) that requires our website content, online services and programs to be fully accessible to a wider range of people with disabilities, including blindness and low vision, deafness and hearing loss, learning disabilities, cognitive limitations, limited movement, speech disabilities, photosensitivity and combinations of these.

But most importantly, designing and maintaining an accessible website is the right thing to do.

 

Page compliance

All "official" and "authorized" pages must be accessible. Official pages include the home page and all subsidiary pages related to the mission of SUNY Oswego (i.e., the catalog, schedules, institutional policies, etc.).

Authorized pages are those with the endorsement of a specific division, department or other unit that publishes and maintains them and are linked to the official campus pages.

Personal pages are currently exempt, unless they are being used in support of coursework or as authorized pages (as defined above). It is recommended as a matter of usability that personal pages also be made accessible.

All sites, services and pages from third-party vendors must also be accessible to W3C standards.

 

Checking compliance

SUNY Oswego recommends multiple methods for our web editors to ensure their content is kept as accessible and compliant with WCAG 2.0 Level AA as possible. Methods that are used for testing include the following:

Automated testing

SUNY Oswego uses WebAIM’s WAVE tool and SiteImprove to internally evaluate accessibility of our pages.

Manual testing (keyboard control)

Web sites should be navigable using only keyboard control (via tabbing through links and menus). All programs and services that are offered that require a mouse to navigate also must be able to be completed and accessed by visitors who only use a keyboard.

Clear focus states are required for all interactive elements so visitors know when their keyboard has focused on that element.

Plugins and aids

File types that may be encountered on the web site may include Microsoft PowerPoint, Word, Excel, and PDF. Below are some helpful links to ensure that you can access these file types without having to purchase the software.

Please note that these tools are not provided by SUNY Oswego. They are listed as a tool to help ensure access to content without necessarily having to install the full version of each program on your computer.

Microsoft PowerPoint viewer

PowerPoint files are able to be viewed without purchasing the software by downloading Microsoft’s free PowerPoint viewer tool.

Microsoft Excel Viewer

Excel files are able to be viewed without purchasing the software by downloading Microsoft’s free Excel viewer tool.

Microsoft Word Viewer

Excel files are able to be viewed without purchasing the software by downloading Microsoft’s free Excel viewer tool.

PDFs

PDFs can be viewed by any modern web browser. We recommend using the latest version of Google Chrome to view PDF files.

Browser compatibility statement

Staff in SUNY Oswego’s Digital Services area, who maintains the main web presence for oswego.edu, recognizes that our users may have various internet browsers and operating systems. We’d like our visitors to have the best, most accessible experience using our website. However, we recognize that it is impractical to develop applications that work identically, efficiently and effectively on all web browsers.

As a result, we advise the use of the following browsers:

  • Microsoft® Edge
  • Mozilla Firefox (version 52 or higher)
  • Google Chrome (version 56 or higher)
  • any other modern web browser compatible with HTML5 and CSS3

Our site will work on other browsers and information will be accessible, but the above browsers have the most recent implementation of web specification standards, and therefore will result in the best experience for users.

 

Report an accessibility error

If you come across an accessibility error on oswego.edu please fill out this form to alert us.