FutureLearn accessibility statement

This accessibility statement applies to UCL FutureLearn.

UCL FutureLearn (https://www.futurelearn.com/ and https://www.futurelearn.com/campus/ucl) is run by FutureLearn although some course content has been added by UCL. 

To adapt the content to your needs or preferences in most cases you should be able to: 

  • Change colours, contrast levels and fonts. 
  • Resize text up to 200% without impact on the functionality of the website. 
  • Zoom in up to 400% without loss of information or functionality, or the need to scroll in more than one direction. 
  • Navigate the website using just a keyboard and allow users to: 
  • Tab to ‘Skip to content’ links at the top of the page to jump over repetitive information to the main content. 
  • Tab through the content; the current location will be indicated by a clear visual change. 
  • Control the embedded media player to play audio and video materials. 
  • Use a screen reader (e.g., JAWS, NVDA) to: 
    • Listen to the content of web pages and use any functionality on the page. 
    • List the headings and subheadings in the page and then jump to their location on the page. 
    • Bring up a list of meaningful links on the page. 
    • Use transcripts or closed captions with most audio and video material; and  
    • In some cases, download learning materials in alternative formats (e.g., Word document, PDF, ePub, Kindle eBook). 

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

How accessible this website is 

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible. You can see a full list of any issues we currently know about in the non-accessible content section of this statement. 

  • Older legacy and archived material. 
  • Some third-party content not created by FutureLearn (including content produced by Universities or Partners).  
  • Sites linked from FutureLearn pages but not run by FutureLearn 
  • Some activities (for example some of those involving maps, charts, graphs, online-experiments, interactive activities, and features).  
  • Some content with specialised notations, such as mathematics, physics, chemistry, and music. 
  • Some content created in tutorials. 
  • Older PDFs and Word documents may not be fully accessible to screen reader software.  
  • The colour contrast for some text and some interface components may not provide enough contrast. 

FutureLearn aim to meet WCAG 2.2 AA standards and treat anything within their control that doesn't meet that standard as an issue to be fixed and have an accessibility issue tracking system that allows them to be reported and assigned to the most appropriate product team. 

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 contact us.

We’ll consider your request and aim to get back to you in 5 working days. 

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, please contact us.

Read tips on contacting organisation about inaccessible websites

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 

UCL is committed to making its websites 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 2.2 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

Platform and content issues 

FutureLearn list platform accessibility Web Content Accessibility (WCAG) issues in their Accessibility and inclusion policy

Many of the items in the FutureLearn Accessibility Statement refer to course content, which is the responsibility of the course creator. The FutureLearn partnerships team constantly advise all partners to adhere to accessibility guidelines. 

Current web technology is not capable of ensuring the accessibility of specialised notations (e.g., mathematics, chemistry, physics, music, phonetics etc.). We are monitoring developments in these areas and will improve our services as the technology matures.  

The level of accessibility during live events is limited. We are working closely with third-party suppliers and improving our internal systems to improve accessibility during live events.  

FutureLearn may at times provide links to external websites that may not meet accessibility standards.  

Some of our older PDFs and Word documents may not provide the information required by assistive technology. We are striving to make older documents accessible and ensure new PDFs and Word documents published after September 2018 meet WCAG 2.2 standards. Some third-party documents may not be accessible. We are liaising with suppliers to increase provision of accessible documents as part of our document selection process.  

Some purely decorative images (e.g., stock images) need to be marked as decorative within the code so screen reader technology can simply ignore these images. This fails WCAG 1.1.1 Non-text Content (A).

Some interactive elements on the page such as links and buttons do not have a clear outline to show when they are in focus. This means that someone who is using the keyboard tab key to access these elements cannot be clear when a link or other element is in focus and can be activated. This fails WCAG 2.4.7 Focus Visible (AA).  

Some forms do not have clear labels linked to input areas that are used by screen readers to provide information about how to complete the form. This makes it difficult for people using a screen reader to complete the form. This fails WCAG 1.3.1 Info and Relationships (A).  

FutureLearn is committed to addressing all the above issues. We carry out regular site audits to identify and fix accessibility problems and when we publish new content, we strive to ensure it meets the highest possible accessibility standards. 

If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, please contact us.

Disproportionate burden 

At this time, we have not made any disproportionate burden claims. 

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

PDFs and other documents 

Some of our PDFs and Word documents are essential to providing our services. For example, we have PDFs with information on how users can access our services, and forms published as Word documents. We are currently working on fixing these essential documents or replacing them with accessible html web pages.  

Our testing processes

We tested the website using a combination of manual and automated checks alongside reference to the existing accessibility reports provided by the third-party systems that make up parts of the process.  If you find an issue we have not yet identified, you can report it to us. We’ll pass this information to the website owner who will review the issue, make sure it is included in our plan to fix issues and add it into the accessibility statement when it is next updated.

FutureLearn’s testing processes 

FutureLearn accessibility test both the platform (process for testing the platform) and content created by UCL course creators. FutureLearn also undertake Quality Assurance (QA) reviews is for all open courses on the FutureLearn platform (except private courses and non-English language courses). QA is conducted by Editorial Specialists. They view all course content to ensure it meets accessibility criteria which includes the following checks: 

  • Subtitles and transcripts present for all video and transcripts for all audio. 
  • Descriptive and meaningful alt text present for all images, including graphs.  
  • Detailed images can be viewed with expandable image function used where necessary. 
  • Audio and video are high quality, sufficient to understand the material.  
  • All elements that pose potential accessibility issues have accessible fallbacks, such as PDFs. 
  • Information is never conveyed through colour alone. 

Preparation of this accessibility statement 

This statement was prepared on 10 June 2022. It was last reviewed on 10 June 2022. This website was last tested on 19 November 2018. The test was carried out by FutureLearn.