Accessibility statement for eTheses

This accessibility statement applies to UBIRA eTheses, a website run by the University of Birmingham. 

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

This website runs on the Open Source software EPRINTS version 3.4.0 and has been customised for our own requirements and branding. The parts of EPRINTS which are not full accessible prior to these customisations can be found in a list of EPRINTS non-accessible content.

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible:

  • Many PDF documents included in the thesis archive aren’t fully accessible to screen reader software
  • Search functionality may not be accessible to screen reader software due to inadequate labelling of search boxes and buttons
  • Heading structure may not present content in a logical sequence
  • Colour contrast of some text is insufficient to be easily discernible for all users

Feedback and contact information

If you need information on this website in a different format like accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille, please email

We’ll consider your request and get back to you in 10 days.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website and are continuing to audit our content. If you find something that you are unable to access, or we have failed to identify a barrier, please let us know.

If you find any problems that aren’t listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, please email

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

The University of Birmingham 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

Items 1-3 below require improvements to be applied by the EPRINTS software supplier with forthcoming software releases (EPRINTS Accessibility Roadmap):

  1. Headings on some of our pages do not appear in a logical order.
    This does not meet WCAG 2.1 ‘A’ success criterion 2.4.10 (Section Headings)
  2. Some of the forms and interactive search pages on Accessibility Test are not appropriately labelled or do not have labels. 
    This does not meet WCAG 2.1 'A' success criterion 3.3.2. (Labels or Instructions)
  3. Interactive elements (such as search) do not utilise status messages to update screen readers of a change in state.
    This does not meet WCAG 2.1 ‘A’ success criterion 3.2.2. (On Input)
  4. Colour contrast is insufficient on some graphical objects and text across the site and some text is displayed over images making colour contrast inconsistent.
    This does not meet WCAG 2.1 ‘AA’ success criterion 1.4.3 (Contrast (Minimum))
    We aim to make local changes to improve contrast by October 2020.

Disproportionate burden

We are not making any claim of disproportionate burden at this time.

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

  • PDFs and other documents

The eTheses repository hosts electronic versions of PhD theses and other dissertations produced by students in the course of their studies. These are typically in PDF format.

The accessibility regulations do not require us to fix third-party content that is neither funded nor developed by, nor under the control of, the public sector body. Thus while we advise postgraduate research students on good practice in relation to producing accessible documents, we do not check nor attest to the accessibility of theses deposited in the repository.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

UBIRA eTheses runs on the open source software EPRINTS version 4.2.0 and has been customised for our own requirements and branding. We will upgrade to the latest version (4.2.2) which addresses some accessibility issues, by March 2021. The EPRINTS Accessibility Roadmap further shows how and when EPRINTS plan to improve accessibility with their software releases.

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 21 September 2020.  It was last reviewed on 21 September 2020.

This website was last tested on 18 September 2020. The test was carried out by university staff using a selection of automated tools (Lighthouse, Tota11y, WAVE) and manual checks.

We tested the publicly available pages of as follows: