We make every effort to ensure that our website www.hs-furtwangen.de is barrier-free in accordance with the Regulations for creating barrier-free Information Technology and §10 paragraph 1 of the State Regulations on Equal Opportunities for the Disabled (L-BGG).
However, if such a barrier is encountered on our pages, please inform us using the following contact details:
If an answer has not been received within the deadline laid down in §8 sentence 1 of the state regulations (L-BGG-DVO), assistance from an ombudsman can be sought either from the municipal or state official responsible for the needs of disabled persons, within the framework of §14 paragraph 2 sentence 2 of the state regulations (L-BGG) and §15 paragraph 3 sentence 2 of the state regulations (L-BGG). Class action lawsuits are possible in accordance with §12 paragraph 1 sentence 1 number 4 of the state regulations (L-BGG).
Many PDF documents which are available for download on the website, as well as other content, are currently not barrier-free due to a lack of resources. We are continuously working to improve this situation and to make them available barrier-free.
Last updated: May 2020
Furtwangen University endeavors to fulfill all relevant EU guidelines and national laws which require accessibility, and hereby publishes, as required by law, its accessibility declaration.
1. Validity and scope of this declaration
As a state university, Furtwangen University (HFU) is a public institution or statutory body under public law, and as such makes every effort to ensure that its website and mobile application are in accordance with national legislation to implement the EU guidelines (EU) 2016/2012 of the European Parliament and Council (1).
The following declaration is valid for all visual and technical content for which HFU is centrally responsible, on both public and restricted-access HFU websites, sub- and subsequent pages of the domain (URL: https://www.hs-furtwangen.de and http://www.hs-furtwangen.de/.../, hereby referred to as HFU web presence), as well as for any related pictorial, video or textual content. The scope also covers the legal control and thematic manipulation of underlying content of the centrally administered website and intranet. All other external, legal, organisational and technically independent institutions whose websites may be linked with HFU or refer to HFU operate independently outwith our control, and are not covered or included in this declaration.
2. Determining guidelines, laws and regulations
The HFU web presence is subject to the following directives, laws, regulations, and technical standards, which represent the basis of the efforts to provide accessibility and the functionality and design of this web presence:
- the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (13.12.2006)
- the EU Directive 2016/2102 on barrier-free Access to Public Sector Websites and Mobile Applications (26.10.2016)
- the Federal Law on Equal Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities (BGG) (27.04.2002 / 10.07.2018)
- the Regulations on barrier-free Information Technology (BITV 2.0) (12.09.2011)
- the BW State Law on equal Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities (L-BGG) (17.12.2014/12.12.2018)
- the BW e-Government Law (EGovG BW) (15.12.2015)
Additionally, the HFU web presence complies with the following technical requirements and standards:
- the W3C: Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 (05.06.2018) and
- the ETSI/CEN/CENELEC: EN 301 549 v2.1.2. Accessibility requirements for ICT products and services (Aug. 2018)
3. Self-evaluation of accessibility of the HFU website in accordance with ITV/WCAG (Last updated: October 2019)
a) HFU homepage not AAA standard
According to the criteria of the WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) and the ISO certified WACG 2.0/2.1 standard, the HFU homepage has not achieved a AAA (Triple A) evaluation and instead has been awarded a AA (Double A) status. This is mainly due to the fact that the design of the HFU homepage is intended to be entertaining rather than purpose-oriented.
b) BITV self-test
In January 2019, HFU carried out a BITV self-evaluation (Barrier-free Information Technology Regulations 2.0 of 21.05.2019). The BITV/WCAG test (https://testen.bitv-test.de/selbstbewertung/test.php) is a comprehensive and reliable self-test of the accessibility of information-oriented web offers comprising 60 steps in total. The test includes the new requirements of the WCAG 2.1 (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, see above). In this self-evaluation test, the results relating to accessibility on the HFU web presence were not consistant.
The test included the central HFU website with centrally administered sub-pages.
c) Further evaluations
HFU also evaluated the HFU web presence on the basis of the observation and use of individual functional elements related to accessibility. The results showed that there are various aspects of accessibility where HFU needs to improve, as we aim to show in the overview of the current situation and requirements in the table below. The criteria shown are taken from the 4 principles (noticeable, useable, understandable, robust) of the WCAG:
|Accessibility||Status||Target reached (Year)|
|Clear and consistant navigation||++||2020|
|Alternative texts of pictures and diagrams||++||2020 / 2021|
|Display of content in sign language||+||2021 / 2022|
|Use of colours and contrast (contrast, redundancy)||++||2020|
|Usability using only keyboard||++||2020|
|Alternative navigation paths||+++||2019|
|Informative link text||++||2020|
|Sub-titles/audio description for videos||+||2021|
|Fault tolerance during user input||++||2020|
|Conformity of documents to syntactical standards||++||2020|
|Page structure and order (screenreader optimisation)||++||2020|
|International comprehensibility (English content)||++||2021|
(Legend: +++ = implemented, ++ = in need of improvement / currently being improved, + = planned)
Additional information about the table:
- Our website is almost completely bilingual, German and English.
- Website source code optimisation for screenreader compatibility will require additional technical tools and considerable time and effort to implement; it is however currently under development.
- The website currently offers two methods of accessing content: the navigation menu and the search function.
- Videos (sub-titles are normal on the website, audio accompaniment however will require considerable time and effort to implement)
- A video in sign language is in planning. This will involve content which is also currently being developed, which will result in further delay in implementing the project.
d) Excessive demands on HFU resources
The HFU website cannot currently achieve the complex and broad-ranging accessibility goals we have set ourselves. Excessive demands on our human and organisational resources mean that comprehensive accessibility cannot yet be achieved:
- Neither central departments (e.g. Communications, IT, etc.) nor individual study programmes can deal with the challenges posed by accessibility due to a severe lack of manpower.
- Disproportionately high demands on human and organisational resources in the implementation of accessibility is also responsible for the partially incomplete areas and sections of the HFU website; immediate (and non-successive) implementation of accessibility would place too great a strain on the current information and organisational areas of responsibility of the above-mentioned central HFU departments (cf. guidelines (EU) 2016/2102 and state regulations (L-BGG), changes made 12.12.2018, explanation of §10 para. 2). Barrier-free functionality of the sections will nevertheless be carried out as part of a continuous process.