Web Accessibility at Purdue

The creation and dissemination of knowledge is a defining characteristic of universities and is fundamental to Purdue University's mission to promote learning, discovery, and engagement. The use of digital and Web-based delivery of information is increasingly central to carrying out the University’s mission. Acknowledging this fact, Purdue University is committed to ensuring equal access to information for all its constituencies.

Purdue University has created a Web Accessibility Policy that establishes miniumum standards for accessibility of Web-based information and services considereded necessary to meet the University's goal and ensure compliance with applicable law. 

Web Accessibility removes barriers to electronic information and technology. Accessibility focuses on all potential users of Web content. These include individuals who must or choose to use assistive technology to consume content on the Web. Web Accessibility is making sure the code of a Web page is written in a way to be as clear as possible to assistive technology such as screen readers. This normally means adding a few extra lines of code which may not be visible on the Web page, but helps to clarify information to someone who may be listening rather than reading a Web page.

Web Accessibility Compliance 

Expectations and Extensions 

Requests for extensions or exceptions to the Policy will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis by the campus Equal Opportunity Officer. A request for an extension or exception must be made, in writing, to your campus Equal Opportunity Officer. At West Lafayette, that is the Director of the Office of Institutional Equity. The Equal Opportunity Officer will evaluate each request on a case-by-case basis. Requests for extensions should include the reason compliance cannot be accomplished in the requisite time frame along with an anticipated time frame for compliance and/or the proposed alternative. Requests for exceptions may be granted where compliance is not technically possible or may require extraordinary measures due to the nature of the information and the intent of the Web page. Requests for exceptions must be based on issues other than cost alone.

Compliance Sheriff 

Compliance Sheriff is an automated accessibility testing tool from HiSoftware. It helps organizations ensure that their web pages meet accessibility standards. Compliance Sheriff features a web-based user interface that checks the overall compliance of a website and identifies web pages with accessibility issues.

The purpose of this service is to assist Purdue Web sites in meeting compliance with Purdue’s Web Accessibility Policy and current federal, state and local laws regarding electronic and information Technology. Compliance Sheriff is optimized to compare Web pages to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA, the internationally recognized standards for Web accessibility. Anyone with a Purdue career account can request access to use this tool to scan their site, see instructions below. It is highly recommended that users have a basic understanding of HTML code.

How to Get Started 

Anyone requesting access to use Compliance Sheriff must go through in-person training first and should have a basic understanding of HTML code. Upon registering for training, individuals will be added to the appropriate user group for their department on the server and will be able to create and run scans and reports. Current training sessions are listed under Upcomings Events. Individuals and/or departments may request training via compliancesheriff@purdue.edu.  


Now that you're ready to dig in, there are plenty of documentation and support resources available to you on the Compliance Sheriff Wiki.  Please note that individuals will not receive access to the Compliance Sheriff Wiki until they have completed training.  Be sure to follow CSprogress at Purdue on Mixable and join the discussion!  See below for additional information on these resources and more.

  • Compliance Sheriff on Mixable: log in by using your Purdue career username and password. Browse Compliance Sheriff Software in the group settings and select join. Select a status: Connected (can post) or View Only (can’t post).
  • Compliance Sheriff Wiki: log in by using your Purdue career username and password. Individuals will be given access upon completion of training.
  • Compliance Sheriff Mixable and Wiki not helpful? Send us an email for further assistance at compliancesheriff@purdue.edu 


The Office of Institutional Equity (OIE) will use Compliance Sheriff to conduct random audits of web accessibility for Purdue University Web pages and individual Web pages that conduct university related business. Based on these audits, OIE will provide individualized feedback and guidance so accessibility can be improved.

Web Accessibility Committee

The Purdue Web Accessibility Committee Website lists resources, guidelines, and tools to assist those with making their Web pages accessible. Volunteers from the Web Accessibility Committee are available for technical questions, and these questions can be submitted using the questionnaire form on their contact page.



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If you have trouble accessing this page because of a disability, please contact the Office of Institutional Equity at equity@purdue.edu or (765) 494-7255