About ProQuest > Accessibility

Glossary Item Box

Our aim is to ensure that ProQuest is accessible to everyone. This page explains how you can take advantage of some of the techniques we’ve used to enhance accessibility within ProQuest. 

Finding your way around
Changing the visual display
Accessing rich media content

Finding your way around

Site links

At the top of every ProQuest page are navigation links to the main areas of ProQuest, as well as a link to help relevant to your current page, feature, or task. At the bottom of every ProQuest page are links to general site information such as: Contact Us, Privacy Policy, and Sitemap.

Individual ProQuest pages provide links to relevant product features and functionality.


The sitemap provides a list of links to pages within the main functional areas of ProQuest. A link to the sitemap is included in the footer at the bottom of every ProQuest page.

Access keys

The following access keys provide keyboard shortcuts to selected ProQuest pages and functionality without using a mouse:

0 = Accessibility page
1 = Search page
2 = Skip navigation
3 = Sitemap
4 = Quick search box on the results page
6 = Help (opens in a new window)

Using access keys with specific browsers

Press the key combinations listed below to access the specific page or functionality listed above. ‘Accesskey’ corresponds to the numeric values 1–6 listed above. For example, to display the ProQuest sitemap using Internet Explorer 7, hold down the ALT key, press 3, and then press ENTER.

Internet Explorer 7+

ALT + accesskey + ENTER


Firefox 3+

SHIFT + ALT + accesskey (PC)
CTRL + accesskey (Mac)


ALT + accesskey (PC)
CTRL + accesskey (Mac)


SHIFT + ESC to list the access keys available

Google Chrome

Alt + accesskey

Using the TAB key

You can use the TAB key to navigate through the main elements of a page, such as links and form fields.

Note: Default settings in Safari are to press Option and the TAB key to move through each link on the page.

Skip navigation

If you use a screen reader or your keyboard to access ProQuest, you can bypass the site-wide navigation links and jump directly to the content of the page using the “Skip over navigation to the main content” link at the top of each page. This link is usually hidden from view but can be revealed on screen by pressing the TAB key or Accesskey 2.

Screen reader or keyboard users can also use the TAB key or Accesskey 8 to bypass the list of suggested subjects on the Search Results list. Screen reader users can also use the TAB key to go to a link that allows them to turn on/off hit highlighting for speaking browsers.

Popup windows in ProQuest

ProQuest makes use of popup windows to provide some content. Popups do not provide advertising in ProQuest; they always contain ProQuest content only.

If you have a popup blocker activated, you will need to disable it for full access to ProQuest content. Alternatively, most popup blockers can be configured to allow popups for sites you select, while still blocking popups from other sites. Refer to your browser help for details on how to disable your popup blocker or to allow popups within ProQuest.

Links which trigger a popup window include warning text to inform you that content will load in a new browser window.

Changing the visual display

Changing text size

You can change the display size of text used throughout ProQuest (including navigation) directly within your browser.


Internet Explorer



Google Chrome

Note: If you use a Mac you should hold down the Apple/Command key and press the + or - key.


Changing text, background, and link colors

If you find certain color combinations difficult to read, your browser may provide tools to change the text and background colors for viewing Web pages. You can apply these changes to over-ride the styles set by ProQuest. The following are options available in the main browsers supported by ProQuest: 

Internet Explorer

  1. Open the Tools menu.
  2. Select Internet Options.
  3. Click the Accessibility button.
  4. Select the Ignore colors specified on webpages checkbox and click OK.
  5. Click the Colors button on the Internet Options dialog box
  6. Deselect the Use Windows colors checkbox.
  7. Select your color preferences and click OK.


  1. Open the Tools menu.
  2. Choose Options.
  3. Click the Colors button from the Content tab.
  4. Deselect the Use system colors checkbox.
  5. Select your color preferences
  6. Deselect the Allow pages to choose their own colors… checkbox and click OK.


Safari does not allow you to easily change the background, text, visited link, and unvisited link colors. However, you can use your own style sheets to view web pages:

  1. Open the Edit menu.
  2. Select Preferences.
  3. Click Advanced.
  4. Select Other from the Stylesheet menu.
  5. Navigate to the style sheet you wish to use.
  6. Click Open.


  1. Open the Tools menu.
  2. Choose Preferences.
  3. Open the Web Pages tab.
  4. Select the type of text you want to change.
  5. Click on the Color button next to background color, normal link color or visited link color to change the color for that page element.
  6. Select your color preferences and click OK.

Accessing rich media content


JavaScript is a scripting language that helps software developers provide a rich, dynamic user interface. Modern Web browsers have JavaScript enabled by default. Since JavaScript is used to provide functionality throughout ProQuest, we strongly recommend that you keep it enabled in your Web browser. Although you can search for and retrieve content with JavaScript disabled, your experience will not be as rewarding without JavaScript.

Where JavaScript is used, we’ve ensured that the corresponding functionality is accessible by major Web browsers and assistive technologies.

Animated or interactive content

ProQuest contains some animated or interactive content that requires the Flash player plug-in. This link will open in a new window


ProQuest provides access to video clips that play using the JW Player: Flash Video PlayerThis link will open in a new window You will need to have the Flash player plug-in installed on your computer to play the clips. Video clips are frequently available in both Windows PC and Mac formats.

Although we are unable to provide captioning for video at this time, transcripts are provided for some video clips.

PDF content

Much of the content within ProQuest is available in PDF format. You will need Adobe Reader This link will open in a new window installed on your computer to view documents in PDF format. Some PDFs have been created from scanned text and are therefore accessible to screen readers. However, a large proportion of our older content, as well as content provided by third-party publishers, was created from scanned images of original text. Text in the images is not accessible to screen readers. This content is identified throughout ProQuest with the label 'Scanned image PDF.' The label appears on links and page headers where appropriate.

Graphics in content

Some ProQuest content includes graphics—such as photographs, illustrations, tables, and charts—that were part of the original document. When available, a short caption appears in the text beside these items. Alternative text is provided for all graphical content and usually includes the caption or title of the image. You can usually click a graphic to open an enlarged view.

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