Media Release Students’ Association and Vertigo provide an inclusive experience online

Media Release

We have recently installed an accessibility toolbar on our UTS Students’ Association and Vertigo website, which contains a number of features that enable users with a diverse range of disabilities to access the website’s content.

Being able to offer an inclusive experience is essential to support over 20% of the population who may encounter barriers when exploring our website due to having a disability, learning difficulty, visually impartment or if they speak English as a second language.

"Being able to read and access important information and internet content is a fundamental right that is so often denied to disabled people, so implementing this toolbar on the Students’ Association website is a fantastic step towards equitable access for all and sets precedent for UTS as a whole to do what is right and just for disabled people," Accessibility Officer, Cal McKinley said.

Antona Islam Bursa, the International Students' Officer explains “About 11944 international students have enrolled at UTS in 2021 and due to recent circumstances, most of them are still overseas, doing classes online. Majority of international students are disadvantaged with English as a second language to them. On an individual level, this means that students fall behind in their studies or are unable to access certain information that might help them during their course. Having a platform like Recite Me can offer international students with that additional resource they desperately need.”

The Recite Me assistive toolbar on the UTSSA and Vertigo website includes screen reading functionality, multiple reading aids, customisable styling options an on-demand live translation feature that boasts over 100 languages including 35 texts to speech and styling options.

It can be activated on any page of the websites by clicking on the "Accessibility tools" icon in the right-hand corner of the page.

“We are incredibly excited to be launching the Recite Me innovative assistive technology to make the content of the Students’ Association and Vertigo website more accessible to students. This service will help our students access information about the Students’ Association in a way that best meets their individual needs or language requirements," the UTSSA President, Anna Thieben said.

"The university falls short in meeting the accessibility needs of its students and we know that we do too. We can always be doing more to listen to and support you,” the UTSSA President, Anna added.

We hope that toolbar will make our website accessible for all of our users and are open to receiving feedback on the effectiveness of the toolbar. If you have any recommendations about how we can improve the accessibility of our services, we would love to hear from you.

For Further Comment;

Anna Thieben

UTSSA President

9514 1153