Accessibility Statement For Scholarship Exchange

This accessibility statement applies to Scholarship Exchange, accessed via

The Open University’s web presence consists of several million individual pages across numerous websites. We want as many people as possible to be able to use our websites, and accessibility is an essential part of our mission. To adapt the content to your needs or preferences in most cases you should be able to:

  • Change colours, contrasts levels and fonts.
  • Navigate most of the public website using just a keyboard.
    • 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. 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.

For additional accessibility for websites associated with teaching and learning, students should read the Learning Accessibility Statement (you will be required to sign in using an Open University student or staff account to read this statement). If any module-specific accessibility-related guidance is needed beyond the Learning Systems statement, you will find this in the Accessibility Guide on your module website.

For additional accessibility information about Student Support sites (including StudentHome, the Help Centre, Student Policy and Regulations) and other sites designed to support students but excluding the websites covered within the Learning Systems statement, students should read the Student Support Accessibility Statement.

How accessible this website is

We strive to exceed current accessibility standards. However, we know some elements of Open University websites are not fully accessible:

User-generated files and file previews.

Account page, accessed via

We aim to provide accessible alternative content or activities where we can. For more information please visit What Support is Available and for more guidance please visit Studying on a Screen.

Feedback and contact information

If you need information on this website in a different format like accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording, please email Figshare (the company whose platform underlies Scholarship Exchange) at They will consider your request and get back to you as soon as they can.

If you find that a certain section of our website is not accessible and you can’t get access to the information that you need please use this form to request support and we will ensure that you are provided with the information you require. You will need to provide your contact details and PI if you are a student so we can get back to you. You should expect to hear back from us within 5 working days.

The OU is very experienced in meeting accessibility needs for our students. In many cases we are able to provide module and other study support materials in alternative formats for students who indicate a need for this when completing a Disability Support Form.

In addition, some module materials are available in different formats and can be downloaded from module websites. Students can contact their Student Support Team for advice.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of our websites. If you find a problem that isn’t already listed on this page, or you think we’re not meeting the requirements of the current accessibility regulations (Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018), please use this accessible Feedback Form which is monitored daily.

We will ask you for the web address (URL) of the page and a description of the problem. We will also ask for your name and email address so that we can contact you about your feedback. You should expect to hear back from us within 5 working days.

Enforcement procedure

If you are a student, or someone who has had contact with the University before, and have a complaint about the accessibility of our websites, you should raise a complaint via the complaints and appeals process.

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 are not happy with our response and all our procedures have been exhausted, please contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS). If you are based in Northern Ireland you can contact the Equalities Commission for Northern Ireland Equalities Commission for Northern Ireland (ECNI).

If you are neither a student, nor someone who has had contact with the University before and have a complaint about the accessibility of our website, you should go directly to the EASS.

Contacting us

If you wish to contact us about anything not covered above, please use this Accessibility support and feedback form.

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

The Open University 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 and exemptions listed below.

Non accessible content

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations


The site does not display properly when magnified to 200%, without loss of content or functionality. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criteria 1.4.4 (Resize Text).

We plan to make sure this meets accessibility standards by May 2024.

The site does not display properly when magnified to 400%, or when viewed on a display of 320 x 256 pixels. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criteria 1.4.10 (Reflow).

We plan to make sure this meets accessibility standards by May 2024.


Some forms do not have labels. This fails WCAG 2.1 Success Criterion 2.4.4 Link Purpose (In Context)

We plan to make sure this meets accessibility standards by May 2024.


There are colour contrast issues. This fails WCAG 2.1 Success Criterion 1.4.11 AA (Non-text Contrast) .

We plan to make sure this meets accessibility standards by May 2024.

The OU are working with Figshare, the platform supplier, to resolve all of the above issues. We carry out regular site audits to identify and feedback accessibility problems to be fixed. When we publish new content on the platform, we strive to ensure it meets the highest possible accessibility standards.

Disproportionate burden

Testing has shown that some content on the Scholarship Exchange (i.e. images, video and audio assets hosted on the platform) is frequently not accessible. Typically, content may not have marked headings, alternative text for images, accessible tables, or captions and transcripts for audio.

However, to improve the accessibility of our content, we commit to making PDFs and Microsoft Word documents accessible on demand (at least as accessible as reasonably possible), as well as providing transcripts of audio-visual media content of less than 15 minutes duration. If you require a transcript of a media file, or require a PDF or Word document in a more accessible version please use our accessibility support and feedback form stating in the description why the content is inaccessible to you.

Content not within the scope of the accessibility regulation

Access-controlled parts

Parts of this website are not available to the general public. They are the “content of extranets and intranets published before 23rd September 2019” and are exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations until such time as they undergo a substantial revision, which is planned to be complete by the end of 2021.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

Figshare are working towards full accessibility on access-controlled parts of this site. A major revision of this area is a key development focus for 2024. For further details, please email

As we build new websites and digital services, we strive to ensure that they are accessible and comply with the current legislation. We also review and audit older sites to identify what changes we need to make to improve accessibility.

The Open University website development process has stages that test the usability and accessibility of new and updated platforms, activities and services against WCAG 2.1. As well as working with external consultants, an internal Accessibility and Usability Evaluation team helps to offer guidance in this area and to ensure that accessibility and usability are embedded in the design and development process for developers and content creators.

These activities ensure that we are meeting and responding to the changing digital requirements of our students and users as well as developing and delivering systems and websites which are as accessible and usable as possible.

The Open University is committed to accessibility and demonstrates this in a number of different ways:

The Securing Greater Accessibility team (SeGA) was set up in 2010 as a university-wide initiative to promote accessibility and inclusive practice and support students and staff. SeGA offers training and guidance in accessibility in teaching and learning and oversees forums and activities for a wider community of practice and research. SeGA also runs a network of over 50 accessibility champions and coordinators, who work as points of contact on accessibility queries within their respective academic areas.

Staff at the Open University are offered on-demand accessibility training in a variety of topics to support them to carry out their roles. This will be complemented in the future by the introduction of bespoke, mandatory training in accessibility for all staff to complete in order to further embed accessibility good practice.

The Open University Library provides wide-ranging support to students with disabilities and specific requirements. As well as working with students directly to offer guidance in accessible resources, the Open University Library staff work with publishers to help improve the accessibility of their products.

The Open University aims to make studying as accessible as possible and a range of adjustments and support are available. A well-established disability support team provides guidance for students and arranges for students to have support when accessing digital content online or alternatively, access to a variety of formats. A wealth of resources for information and guidance in enabling students to study as effectively as possible in the digital environment are available via the help centre.

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 15th February 2024.

This website was last tested on 18th January 2024. The test was carried out by the Open University.

The pages were chosen to be representative of all the types of content on the platform. The following pages were audited: homepage, project, poster, articles, search, my data, my profile.

We will respond to your feedback within five working days. If you have an urgent library enquiry please contact the library helpdesk separately.

We appreciate that you have provided us with personal information, we will never sell on your data to anyone else and data is for the use of The Open University only. If you would like to find out more, please visit our privacy policy using the following link :