Accessibility Statement

What are we doing?

To help us make the Gateshead College website a positive place for everyone, we've been using the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1. These guidelines explain how to make web content more accessible for people with disabilities, and user friendly for everyone.

The guidelines have three levels of accessibility (A, AA and AAA). We’ve chosen Level AA as the target for the Gateshead College website.

This means you should be able to perform all main functions of this website using a keyboard, third part accessibility software or using the site without styling (CSS).

We are committed to making sure our services are accessible to all and will continuously review content on this website to make sure


What can you do on this site?

All users should be able to complete the following functions with no barriers highlighted by the WCAG 2.1 AA standard:

  • Search for a course

  • Browse courses on various pages

  • Read all course information

  • Enquire/apply for a course

  • Contact the college via a combination of email, forms, phone & livechat from all pages.

  • Apply for an apprenticeship position

  • Find and access our careers portal

  • Access information about studying at the college, governance, news and updates without issue.

If you are struggling with any of these tasks please contact us using the form or details provided below.

On any page 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 tried to make the website text as simple as possible to understand.

We’ve put together the following resources you may find useful to make this site more accessible:

  • AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.

  • ATBar - an open-source and cross-browser toolbar to help users customize the way they interact with web pages. ATbar allows users to change the look and feel of a page, increase and decrease font sizes, have the text read aloud, use colored overlays, and get readability assistance.


Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, contact: 



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

Gateshead College 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

Image alt text

Some images do not have a text alternative, so people using a screen reader cannot access the information. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (non-text content). However, in the case of the majority of these images a navigation button is also provided which is text based and provides context and meaning both for the image attached and the destination the user is linked to. 

We take care to add alternative text to each new image that is added to the site, however if you find an image that does not comply with this standard please contact us using the form on this page.

PDFs and Word Documents

We are working through PDF and Word documents available on the site to make sure they meet accessibility standards. We plan to complete this by December 2020. None of these documents are essential to providing our services to users.

The accessibility regulations do not require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services.

Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish will meet accessibility standards. 

If there are any documents that don’t meet the standards you require please contact us using the form on this page and we will consider your request.

Prerecorded Video

Currently videos on the site do not have an audio description or text transcript however, the vast majority of videos currently on the site contain no speech and are used purely for decorative purposes. We are working on providing simple text transcripts/descriptions of these videos and plan to do so by December 2020. 

None of the videos on the site provide information that is essential to using site services and the context/message of each page where video is shown is provided by accompanying text content. Any videos uploaded that include speech will have a transcript included at point of upload to the site.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We have set the following targets to continue improving accessibility on this site:

December 2020

  • All PDFs and MS word documents to be accessibility checked and amended to be compliant where required.

  • Video transcripts will be added to relevant pre-recorded videos.

March 2021

  • Six month accessibility check-up. This will be a repeated accessibility using automated and manual methods to discover and fix any issues that have arisen in the previous six months.

  • Implement a much improved full site search engine that will allow courses, apprenticeships and site content to be found quickly.

Potential developments (specific timeframe not currently possible)

  • Implementation of third party accessibility software into site (budget permitting).

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 22/09/2020. 

It was last reviewed on 22/09/2020.

This website was last tested on 22/09/2020. The test was carried out by Digital Allies.

To test WCAG 2.1 AA compliance we decided on a sample of 11 pages that are essential to providing our services:

  • Homepage

  • Application form page

  • Event page

  • Contact Us page

  • About Us page

  • Term Dates page

  • Subjects selection page

  • 2x subject summary pages

  • Course information page

  • Apprenticeships page

These pages were tested using the WAVE Evaluation Tool and Google Lighthouse Accessibility Audit and manually checked against the remaining stipulations of the WCAG 2.1 AA standard. 

These pages were found to contain no errors other than the non-compliances noted above and are therefore considered to be partially compliant with the required standard.

Test reports will be available to download on this page when available.