Notice regarding web accessibility for people with disabilities

Commitment to Accessibility

Western Washington University seeks to provide an environment in which every individual has an opportunity to learn, work, and contribute, and where full inclusion and respect for all people encourages creativity and productivity.  When information technology, including web content, is inaccessible, it has an adverse impact on people with disabilities.

Western Washington University is committed to providing full equal access to all its programs and activities and this includes ensuring that people with disabilities can utilize its website.  This commitment is reflected in ensuring compliance with various laws and policies that support people with disabilities: the Americans with Disabilities Act; Sections 504 and 508 of the Rehabilitation Act; Washington State Anti-Discrimination Law; Western Washington University Policies 1600.02 (“Ensuring Equal Opportunity and Prohibiting Discrimination and Retaliation”) and 1600.03 (“Accommodating Persons with Disabilities”); and Washington State Policy 188.  Western Washington University requires that no qualified person will be denied access to, participation in, or the benefits of, any program or activity of the University because of disability.

Web Accessibility

To report an accessibility barrier on a Western website or to request alternative access to online information, please use the Accessibility Barrier Form.

Admitted and prospective students, employees, applicants, and countless other visitors access Western Washington University's web properties using a wide variety of technologies. Our visitors utilize a variety of different web browsers, screen resolutions, and preferred font sizes.  A growing number of visitors are using mobile phones and other hand-held computers.  Like some of our students and employees, some of our web visitors have disabilities that can make access to our website challenging or even impossible.  To promote Western's commitment to access for all individuals, web content should be accessible to all members of our diverse audience. Accessible web content should be developed in accordance with the following guidelines and standards:

World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1:

WCAG 2.1 covers a wide range of recommendations for making web content more accessible. Following these guidelines at the AA level, will make content accessible to a wider range of people with various kinds of disabilities, including blindness and low vision, deafness and hearing loss, learning disabilities, cognitive limitations, limited movement, speech disabilities, photosensitivity and combinations of these. Implementing proper accessibility will make your web content more usable to users in general.

These Guidelines are associated with the following principles:

  1. Perceivable: Information and user interface components must be presentable to users in ways they can perceive.
  2. Operable: User interface components and navigation must be operable.
  3. Understandable: Information and the operation of user interface must be understandable.
  4. Robust: Content must be robust enough that it can be interpreted reliably by a wide variety of user agents, including assistive technologies.

For more info about web accessibility at Western, resources for content and web developers, and who to contact, visit the Western Digital Accessibility website.

Procurement of Technology

All covered technology [1] acquired, procured, developed or substantially modified or substantially enhanced, including software available at no cost, must be accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, either directly or by supporting the use of assistive technology. WCAG 2.1 at the AA level, noted above, outlines the minimum levels for compliance. Where a covered technology is not able to be brought into compliance, the system or content owner is responsible to provide individuals with disabilities equivalent access [2].

Resources at Western


[1] Websites, web applications, software systems, electronic documents, E-learning, multimedia and programmable user interfaces. This includes interacting with the technology, access and content

[2] Providing users with disabilities with content and interaction that is similar or identical to that provided to users without disabilities, in a form that produces a similar user experience.  Users should be provided direct access to the same content unless providing direct access to that content is not possible due to technical or legal limitations.