Accessible Word and PDF documents


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Slide deck showing how to produce structured Microsoft word documents and accessible PDF files.

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  • Not just blind and deaf …Avoid motion on screen.Keyboard accessible and don’t make fine motor control necessary.
  • Web accessibility is based on 4 principles:
  • Accessible Word and PDF documents

    1. 1. Accessible Word & PDF<br />Scott Williams<br />Office of Institutional<br />
    2. 2. Introductions<br />
    3. 3. The nature of disabilities<br />Visual: blindness, low-vision, color-blindness<br />Hearing: partial to total deafness<br />Motor: inability to use a mouse, slow response time, limited fine motor control<br />Cognitive: Learning disabilities, distractibility, dyslexia, inability to remember or focus on large amounts of information<br />
    4. 4. 1in 5 people have a disability<br />People with disabilities in the U.S: 54.4 million<br />People age 15 and older having difficulty hearing a normal conversation: 8 million<br />People who cannot hear at all: 1 million <br />People age 15 and older having difficulty reading ordinary newsprint (even with glasses): 8 million<br />Number of people being completely unable to see: 1.8 million<br />
    5. 5. A diverse population<br />Cognitive disabilities<br />Greater number than physical and perceptual disabilities combined<br />Adults with ADD/ADHD: 16 million<br />38% of soldiers, 31% of Marines and 49% of National Guard members returning from combat report psychological conditions such as TBI and PTSD<br />Mobility issues—8 million Americans have difficulty using their arms or hands<br />11 million people 6 and older need assistance with everyday activities<br />
    6. 6. More stats<br />8.3% of the U.S. population have 2 or more disabilities<br />40,000 people the in U.S are both deaf and blind<br />41 percent of adults 65 and older have a disability<br />8.7 million people with disabilities are poor<br />70% of disabled are unemployed<br />
    7. 7. What is document accessibility?<br />Perceivable<br />Operable<br />Understandable <br />Robust<br />
    8. 8. Perceivable <br />Sight<br />Hearing<br />Touch<br />Transformability (e.g., text to audio)<br />Content vs. style (separate styling information from content)<br />
    9. 9. Operable<br />Various input methods available:<br />Keyboard-only<br />Mouth stick<br />Trackball mouse<br />Interaction methods allow users to:<br />Discern structure (proper headings and markup)<br />Bypass irrelevant information (e.g., table of contents)<br />Navigate by multiple routes<br />
    10. 10. Understandable<br />Economical use of language<br />Text supplemented with illustrations, videos, and other formats where appropriate (i.e., use good Universal Design)<br />Navigation, information structure discernable and consistent<br />
    11. 11. Robust<br />Functional across various technologies (e.g., mobile devices, screen readers, refreshable Braille, web)<br />
    12. 12. Accessible MS Word<br />Navigation and orientation are key to document accessibility<br />Create structured documents<br />Use heading formatting for headings<br />Use table-of-contents utility for large documents to provide navigation<br />Provide alternative text for images and equations<br />Use table utility to create tables (not tabs)<br />Add author, title, subject, and keywords to document properties<br />
    13. 13. Provide metadata<br />
    14. 14. Format headings<br />
    15. 15. Provide alt text for images<br />Right click on the image in MS Word to view popup window<br />Select Format Picture… menu item<br />Select Alt Text tab in Format Picture pop-up window, fill in alt text, and click OK button<br />
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    18. 18. Add inline long descriptions for graphs and charts<br />
    19. 19. Beneath the graphic, add:<br />
    20. 20. Author equations using MathType MS Word add-in<br />
    21. 21. Toggle equation to Tex<br />
    22. 22. Copy Tex format and toggle back to equation<br />
    23. 23. Right-click equation to add alternative text<br />
    24. 24. Paste Tex into alt box, click OK<br />
    25. 25. 2 useful add-ins for Word PDF creation<br />MS Office add-in for accessible PDF (not needed if you’ve installed Acrobat Pro):<br />Adobe PDF maker for Word: installed automatically when Adobe Acrobat Pro is installed over MS Word<br />
    26. 26. Creating a PDF with Microsoft add-in<br />Click on the Office button, hover over the Save button and select PDF<br />
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    28. 28. Creating a PDF with Microsoft add-in (2)<br />Before you save the file, make sure that the Document structure tags for accessibility checkbox is selected. <br />
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    30. 30. Creating accessible PDFs with the Adobe add-in<br />Make sure accessibility features are enabled in Adobe add-in preferences<br />
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    35. 35. Publish PDF from Word<br />Once the settings are correct, click the Create PDF button<br />
    36. 36. Checking PDF Accessibility <br />Using Adobe Reader, select the menu pick:Document > Accessibility Quick Check<br />Pop-up window will alert you to any accessibility issues with the PDF<br />Complex documents must be tested with a screen reader (NVDA is free) or a verification and remediation tool, such as NetCentric’s CommonLook (expensive, big learning curve) <br />Contact me ( for assistance<br />
    37. 37. Word & PDF Resources<br /><br /><br />PDF Section 508 checklist:<br />MS Office add-in for accessible PDF:<br />MathType add-in:<br />
    38. 38. Accessibility Resources<br />U-M:<br />WebAIM:<br />Online accessibility checkers:<br /><br /><br /><br />