Accessibility

Our Accessibility Policy

studentfinance.ie has made every effort to ensure that the design of this website conforms to web standards for both usability and accessibility. Our aim is to provide an equivalence of access to the information on this website for all our users.

We have followed the W3C's WAI (Web Accessibility Initiative) guidelines in the creation of this website and we have used the latest technologies available to structure it. The W3C is the governing authority on web development standards and practices.

The website uses XHTML code to provide document structure and CSS (Cascading Stylesheets) to provide document formatting. By following guidelines set down by the W3C we are trying to make sure that all the information on our web site is available to everybody: not just the text, but also the information contained in the images and other media. Using these technologies also allows us to provide a website that loads faster and displays in more devices. The website template set contains valid XHTML and CSS code and conforms to the Web Accessibility Initiative's AA guidelines. In addition, the website template set has been WAI Compliance Tested and has passed all Priority 2 Guidelines.

Browser Compatibility 

We have ensured that the website template set displays on all current browsers including Internet Explorer 6+, Opera 7+, Firefox 1+ and Mozilla/Netscape 7+. If you do not have one of these, we recommend you upgrade as these browsers support web standards which in turn support the provision of fully functional web services for all users.

Images

All images used on the site contain descriptive alt text. In addition, images have been moved into the background where possible.

Tables

Where tables are used, we endeavor to ensure that they are written using semantic markup which includes properly labelled header cells to allow screen readers to render the data intelligently. We also endeavor to only use tables in page content where there is a real need for them, for example in the case of tabular data.

Links

We endeavor to ensure that link text is written to make sense out of context.

Increasing the text size

If you find that the text on this site is too small, you can change it easily by locating the built-in text re-sizing function which is found to the top left of all pages. You can also increase the text size within your browser:

If you use Microsoft Internet Explorer, go to the View menu, select Text Size and then choose either Larger or Largest.

If you use Netscape Navigator, go to the View menu and choose Increase Font until the text is the size you require.

If you use Mozilla Firefox, go to the View menu and select Text Size. Increase until the text is the size you require.

Low Vision Version

We have provided a low vision version for users who may be visually impaired. This version provides an equivalence of access- the low vision version contains exactly the same information as the rest of the website, but it is presented in an easier-to-read fashion.

Navigational Aids

We have built a number of useful navigation aids into the website to benefit all of our users:

Tab Indexes

We have specified a tabbing order for the menu items on the website. This is useful for users who don't use a mouse to get around the page. When each page loads, it is possible to use the Tab key to access the search feature and all the main navigation buttons in a sequential fashion.

Skip Navigation

A function is provided for users of adaptive devices to allow them to skip through the main navigation on each page if they wish. Screen readers will read out each and every menu option exhaustively on each page, so this function allows a user to go directly to the page content if they wish.

Breadcrumbing

Breadcrumbing is used on the website to add extra navigation information and to help users locate themselves within the website.

Site Map & Search Engine

There is a site map available and a search box can be found on the top of all pages.

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