Barrier-free Internet Access for Disabled Persons
The barrier-free Website has been designed according to the barrier-free information technology guidelines (“Barrierefreie Informationstechnik-Verordnung / BITV”), allowing disabled persons unrestricted access to the Internet.
The following browser functions should be activated:
- a separation between content and presentation, i.e., instead of charts merely for layout, only Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) are used to format contents; this enhances accessibility of relevant contents by tools such as screen readers
- the use of relative units of measurement for scaling a page both via browser and tools, allowing the vision impaired to magnify pages; using the Microsoft Internet Explorer, for example, one may scale fonts in the menu “view” under “text size” and “largest”; the same can be done in other browsers such as Mozilla Firefox by using the menu “view” under “text size” and choosing “increase.”
- CSS to define colors and contrasts when displaying a page;
- keyboard browsing via the TAB key for users with motor impairments; visually impaired users may have these jump markers automatically read out to them; other users will see the currently active jump marker shown on the upper left side of the page.
- keyboard short cuts for improved page usability (optimized for Internet Explorer); with Internet Explorer, for instance, short-cuts can be activated by first pressing ALT + the respective short cut key and then pressing ENTER.
When designing the barrier-free site, we had to make a few compromises.
For example, our newsletter is in HTML-format because we wanted to use design elements that a large number of our users rely on. Furthermore, a few email programs are not yet able to correctly display HTML emails using XHTML and CSS.
The web page of the Dortmund student union (“Studentenwerk”) offers many documents as PDF files for download. As of August 2007, not all of those PDF files are accessible barrier-free. However, they are currently being revised and replaced. Information not accessible barrier-free is indicated.
Links to other pages all contain the ?? symbol and open a new browser window. The page opened by the link may not be accessible barrier-free at this time.
Once you successfully send a form (e.g., a contact form) a confirmation will be shown on your screen. If for some reason the form could not be sent, an error message will appear. You will find further information on why the error occurred in the text shown.
Web Page Standards
This site adheres to the following standards:
it uses an up-to-date and valid version of XHTML (indicated by the W3C-HTML-validator logo);
the site’s layout was designed using valid Cascading Style Sheets (indicated by the W3C-CSS-validator logo);
the site was designed according to the barrier-free information technology guidelines (BITV), which is based on the proposals of the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) and its Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 (WCAG) (indicated by the W3C-WAI-WCAG 1.0 logo).
There is no “official” program available to verify the page’s compliance with WCAG’s stipulations.
The AIS Web Accessibility Toolbar EN 1.2 was installed to survey the www.stwdo.de page.
Barrierefreie Informationstechnik Verordnung (BITV)
Barrierefrei informieren und kommunizieren (BIK)
Aktionsbündnis für barrierefreie Informationstechnik (AbI)
Barrierefreies Webdesign – ein behindertengerechtes Internet gestalten
Dortmunder Zentrum Behinderung und Studium (DoBuS)