VleBooks Accessibility Statement

Our Promise

VLeBooks is committed to providing the best and most accessible experience for each and every user.

We are dedicated to proactively reviewing and developing the functionality and accessibility of the service and will enhance the platform to maintain this standard.

The VLeBooks platform is designed to comply with the WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) 2.1 Level AA. Our ongoing developments and new features are designed with the latest guidelines in mind and are tested using recommended software for compliance.

Support and Contact

Our team are available to help and answer any questions to ensure all users can have equal access to information. We also encourage feedback and would love to hear from you.

Please contact accessibility@vlebooks.com. We aim to respond to all enquiries within 1 working day.

Compatible Devices

All standard devices are supported, including Windows PC, MAC, iOS and Android devices.

The platform is built with a responsive design so that it will adapt itself according to the user’s device and browser. Please note, content provided in PDF format will not reflow.

Formats Available

The VLeBooks platform supports PDF eBooks which are formatted to read online and support the accessibility functionality within the VLeBooks Reader.

PDF format books have distinct pages, which allow for page-level citations. They have a fixed page size that may not work well on all devices or screen sizes/zoom levels. PDF eBooks are compatible with screen readers using an ASCII text layer.

As more publishers are supporting EPUB and providing content in that format, we are working towards being able to offer both formats for both online reading and download.


Publishers allow access to eBooks through a range of licences which dictate how many users can read a title at any one time. The licence on offer to users is chosen by the library based on the options available to them.

If all licences are in use, a user will be presented with a message explaining the position and the options available to them (for example, a reservation).

Currently, the VLeBooks platform shows how many copies of a licence a library holds. A future development will see more detail added on the licence types held and what that means for the user.

Digital Rights Management (DRM)

The majority of VLeBooks come with DRM allowances set by the publisher to protect content.

DRM manages licence access, in addition to print and copy levels and requires Adobe Digital Editions in order to read titles that have been downloaded.

An increasing number of titles available through VLeBooks are DRM-free, in which case downloaded copies are compatible with any PDF reader. DRM-free titles are clearly marked as such on the platform.

If you find that the accessibility features of the platform, like the read aloud facility, are not suited to your needs, we can source a DRM-free copy for your use. To organise this, please ask your library helpdesk to contact accessibility@vlebooks.com with the book title and ISBN. This will be provided to your library helpdesk, for your use, within 5 working days.

Colours, Contrasts and Fonts

There are a range of accessibility options available to users which make searching and navigating the platform easier.

To access these options, select Edit Accessibility Settings on the left side of the screen. This feature enables users to set their own preferences for the platform.

Options include:

  • Large Font
  • High Contrast
  • Highlight links in yellow
  • Underline Links
  • Greyscale Colour mode
  • Dyslexic friendly font
  • Prevent pop-up auto close

The options are applied permanently or until users make a change.

When reading via the platform, users can change the background colour to suit their requirements. Select ‘Read Online’ and access the colour palate in the top right-hand corner of the screen. This will open a pop-up panel which allows users to select a reading background from one of seven 7 different dyslexia-friendly colours.

To amend contrast in the reader, users will need a browser plugin such as ‘High Contrast’ on Chrome https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/high-contrast/djcfdncoelnlbldjfhinnjlhdjlikmph?hl=en

Watch or listen to our helpful video on our Accessibility Options https://www.brownsbfs.co.uk/help/vlebooks-videos/vlebooks-video-accessibility

Reading Choices

VLeBooks are accessible anytime, anywhere, and users can read with all common devices and web browsers.

There are two reading options - Read Online or Download.

It is highly recommended that books are read through the platform using the ‘Read Online’ facility, as this has a vast array of features available, which enhance and support the reading experience.

Read Online

Users can read within the platform itself by choosing ‘Read Online’ to access features such as:

  • Table of contents with direct chapter access (and sub-chapters where available)
  • Full text searching
  • Dictionary
  • Annotations; bookmarks, highlights and notes (sharing)
  • Thumbnail view
  • Page layout options (single, double page)
  • Page rotation (Landscape, portrait)
  • Selection of 7 background colours
  • Read Aloud software

There is also a full user guide within the reader itself or accessible at the following web address https://www.vlebooks.com/vlereaderhelp.pdf


Alternatively, users can download by choosing ‘Download’ and read using their preferred device.

To download eBooks, users will need a device which is compatible with Adobe Digital Editions. This can be downloaded for free here:


Full instructions are provided on the eBook’s download page for getting started on every type of device.

Assistive Technology

Our reader has inbuilt text-to-speech, available through ‘Read Online’ which can be used from both desktop and mobile views. The Read Aloud feature enables the user more freedom to roam desktops or browsing devices where traditional assistive software would have been required. Read aloud is a core feature built into the online platform allowing for wider audience access to audible facilities where assistive software may not have been possible or practical.

eBooks downloaded to eReader software such as Adobe Digital Editions can be read by most other software. Common software tools and their compatibility are as follows:

Read & Write Gold

This software has Optical Character Recognition (OCR) capability which enables the eBook to be read via the platform or via download through Adobe Digital Editions.


This is not compatible with the online reader. Download the eBook to Adobe Digital Editions to enable this software to perform.

We recommend accessing the software manufacturers’ own user guides for further information.

Use the following link for information on other tools which may improve the reading experience: https://www.learningapps.co.uk/moodle/xertetoolkits/play.php?template_id=1402


VLeBooks have over 20 levels of magnification using the built-in zoom function, available when reading via the platform, which is operated through the universally recognised zoom icons. Windows & iOS magnifier can also be used.

The zoom function is designed to work as both a reduction and a magnification tool. The actual font size is dependent on device but typically a reading font size of between 4 to 36 is achievable.

DRM free PDFs can be downloaded by users and opened in Adobe Reader or Microsoft Word, where reflow may be possible.

As the platform does not currently support EPUB formats, reflow is not available. We are working towards enabling this.

Copying and Printing

VLeBooks offers both a copying and printing facility.

Each VLeBook has its own print and copy allowance which is set by the publisher. These typically range between 10% and 50% of the total page count of the book.

The percentage allowance and the equivalent number of pages are shown within the Book Details feature of the platform reader. In addition, the breakdown of the actual pages which have been printed/copied by the user are displayed alongside the remaining allowance.

When reading through the platform, there are multiple copy options. Likewise, there is the facility to either print a single page or a range of pages.

When a book has been downloaded, the print and copy experience is driven by the software used.

VleBooks have the required Alt Tags to support image descriptions to help with navigation. The provision of alt-text and image descriptions is the responsibility of the publisher and the VLebooks platform supports screen readers in accessing this information when provided by the publisher.

Jacket images of books which are supplied from the publisher’s data source do not include image tags and therefore the jacket image of the books do not support screen readers at this time.

When reading books within the platform, users have access to a hyperlinked table of contents, page navigation, word/phrase look up function and thumbnail view, in addition to portrait or landscape reading options, single or double-page views and a built-in Read Aloud function.

VLeBooks supports keyboard shortcut navigation. The list of commands are noted below:

ShortcutFunctionePub Compatible
ctrl+shift+Home Goto Page1
ctrl+shift+End Goto Last Page
ctrl+shift+PageUp Scroll down a Page
ctrl+shift+PageDown Scroll up a Page
ctrl+shift+1 Set focus on page number input box
ctrl+shift+2 Add a page note to the current page
ctrl+shift+3 Cycle through Single Page, Double Page, Cover Page view
ctrl+shift+4 Bookmark this page
ctrl+shift+5 Goto next bookmark
ctrl+shift+6 Zoom to Fit to page
ctrl+shift+7 Zoom to Fit to width
ctrl+shift+8 Rotate current page
ctrl+shift+p Print Dialog
ctrl+shift+k Copy Text from current page
ctrl+shift+e Export annotations
ctrl+shift+s Show annotation share code popup
ctrl+shift+y Import annotation share code
ctrl+shift+z Zoom in
ctrl+shift+x Zoom out
ctrl+shift+f Toggle sidebar
ctrl+shift+q Cycle page background colour
f1 Link to Help document
ctrl+shift+f1 Allowance Summary
ctrl+shift+f2 Table of Contents. Use the → ↓ ↑ ← keys to navigate chapters, sub-headings, and sections.
ctrl+shift+f3 Search
ctrl+shift+f4 Thumbs
ctrl+shift+f5 Dictionary
ctrl+shift+f6 Annotations
ctrl+shift+[ Readaloud start / pause
ctrl+shift+] Readaloud restart current page
ctrl+shift+@ Readaloud dialogue popup

Auditing and Updates

The VLeBooks Accessibility Statement was updated in October 2020 and will be reviewed on a regular basis.

The VLeBooks platform was last updated in April 2020.