Updated 21 May 2020

Our commitment to accessibility

To help achieve our objective of excellence in research, scholarship and education and as part of our commitment to serving our customers and users, Oxford University Press is striving to make its products accessible to and inclusive of all our users, including those with visual, hearing, cognitive, or motor impairments.

In line with these goals, we follow the general principles of web usability and universal design and, where feasible, endeavor to make the Oxford Academic platform (Oxford Academic) accessible to all regardless of physical or cognitive impairment or the device used. We are currently targeting adherence to level AA of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 (WCAG 2.1), in order to help our users take full advantage of the accessibility features provided by their chosen device, web browser or operating system.

A programme of improvement

Oxford Academic complies with applicable law relating to accessibility (including with the obligations under The Equality Act 2010) and much of Oxford Academic is already accessible in accordance with WCAG 2.1. We are making ongoing improvements, however, and to accomplish these, we have a committed investment and development programme to deliver improved accessibility compliance over the coming months and beyond.

This continuous improvement programme benefits from expert consultation with a number of universities and institutional partners, including a leading web accessibility expert involved in the creation of WCAG and disability librarians who have validated our approach.

Areas currently identified for improvement include:

  • Improve use of headings to correctly organise content
  • Improve use of lists to correctly organise content
  • Fully support keyboard operability
  • Properly structure site focus
  • Increase visibility of focused elements
  • Improve how elements are read out by screen readers
  • Improve our provision of alt text
  • Improve the usability of dynamic content such as dropdowns and filters for screen readers
  • Ensure all form fields labels are meaningful
  • Correct or remove invisible links
  • Add captions to tables where they are missing

Since commencing this programme we have delivered the following improvements:

May 2020

  • Ensuring that the 'Journal Citation' filter is fully accessible via keyboard
  • All reference links are reachable with a keyboard and receive visible focus
  • Reference popups are now fully usable with a keyboard

April 2020:

  • Ensuring that when a keyboard-only user tabs through the left rail of an article page, visible focus directly returns to the authors in the article body or the article category label if applicable without skipping any links
  • Fixed an issue where the cover image link on the issue page was not accessible to keyboard-only users
  • Ensuring that users can tab to and open valid table or figure links in the article body using a keyboard only. Each table or figure link receives visible focus.
  • Ensuring that all reference links within the body of an article are accessible via keyboard, receive visible focus when tabbed to, and resolve to a working reference link.

March 2020:

  • Improvements to labelling on search pages, so that screen-reading software can better identify form fields
  • Ensuring that empty table headers on article pages are properly handled by screen-reading software
  • Removal of empty links in the reference sections of articles to improve screen-reader navigation
  • Corrected left rail navigation heading structure on article pages to work properly with screen-readers
  • Corrected heading levels in the issue and article page right rail to work properly with screen-readers
  • Corrected left rail navigation heading structure on search pages to work properly with screen-readers

February 2020:

  • Updated the Communication Preferences page so that it is fully usable with a keyboard
  • Corrected the page header on so that an unnecessary link has been removed
  • Updated the Sign In menu so that it is fully usable with a keyboard
  • Modified the navigation bar so that the search feature is fully usable with a keyboard at all levels of magnification

December 2019:

  • Removal of an empty link in the page header, so that navigation with a keyboard is easier and less confusing
  • Improvements to how search filters are labelled on the Advanced Search page, so that screen-reading software can better identify form fields

Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT)

We have commissioned independent VPAT assessment reports to help us better understand how we can improve accessibility on Oxford Academic in line with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act (US). Please download our latest assessment below. As we develop and improve our accessibility offering, we will provide updated VPATs on this page.

VPAT Assessment 2017

Requesting accessible copies of our publications

Your Disability Resource Center or equivalent department may submit an accessibility request for content in a specific format to suit your personal needs. Details on how to submit a request can be found on our Accessibility Resources page. We will endeavor to meet any reasonable accessibility request that we receive.

Your feedback

Our commitment to providing accessible and inclusive content is an ongoing activity. If you have any comments or insights on accessibility that you would like to share with us to help us in this mission, please contact Customer Services.

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