Accessibility is increasingly becoming an important consideration in the workplace, and it can often be daunting trying to figure out how to make sure all of your documents meet the necessary standards. Thankfully, Microsoft Office provides a range of features that allow for the creation of accessible documents with ease and covers Microsoft Documents Accessibility Training.
In this article, we’ll be giving you five steps that will help you create accessible documents with Office!
1. Use Built-in Heading Styles in Word
When creating a document in Microsoft Word, you can make it more accessible to people with disabilities by using the built-in heading styles. To do this, simply select the text you want to format as a heading and then choose one of the heading styles from the Styles drop-down menu. There are six heading levels available in Word, and each level is formatted differently so that screen readers can easily identify them.
For example, Level 1 headings are typically large and bold, while Level 2 headings are slightly smaller and bold. When creating a document, you should always start with a Heading 1 style and then use subsequent heading levels sparingly. This will help to ensure that your document is easy to navigate for people using screen readers.
2. Add Alt Text to all the Graphics
If you’re creating accessible documents with Office, it’s important to make sure that all of your graphics include alternative text (alt text). Alt text is a brief description of the image that can be read by screen readers and other assistive technologies. It allows users who can’t see the image to still understand what it represents. Adding alt text to images is easy to do in most Office applications.
Simply select the image, then open the Format Picture pane (usually found under the Picture Tools tab). In the pane, expand the Alt Text section and enter your alt text in the Description field. Be sure to keep your alt text short and descriptive. Once you’ve added alt text to all of your images, your document will be more accessible to a wider range of users.
3. Add Hyperlinks for easier Readability
When authoring content in Microsoft Office, it’s important to keep in mind how your document will be accessed by people with disabilities. One way to create accessible documents is to add hyperlinks that read clearly. Here are a few tips for creating accessible documents hyperlinks:
- Use descriptive link text: Link text should describe the destination of the link, and be specific enough that users will know where they’ll end up if they follow the link. For example, instead of using “click here” as link text, try something like “read more about our accessibility features.” This is one of the most effective ways to create accessible documents.
- Keep links short: Long-link text can be difficult to read, especially for users with visual impairments who may be using screen reading software. Try to keep links under 60 characters if possible.
- Make sure links open in a new window or tab: This can be especially helpful for users who are navigating your document with a screen reader, as it allows them to keep their place in the original document while still being able to access the linked content.
- Use proper punctuation: Proper punctuation is another way to create accessible documents. Be sure to use proper punctuation when authoring hyperlinks – such as brackets around the URL – so that screen reading software can properly interpret the link.
4. Avoid Tables and Present the Data in a Simplifying Manner
When creating documents in Office, avoid using tables if possible. Tables can be difficult to read and understand, especially for people with disabilities. Instead, try to present the data in a simplifying manner. This will make your document more accessible to a wider audience.
5. Use the Accessibility Checker Function
If you’re using Microsoft Office to create documents, you can use the accessibility checker function to help make sure your documents are accessible to people with disabilities. Here’s how to create accessible documents:
- Open the document you want to check in Microsoft Word, Excel, or PowerPoint.
- Select the File tab, and then select Options.
- In the left pane, select Save.
- Under Preserve accessibility in this file, select the check box.
- Select OK.
- To check your document for accessibility problems, select the Review tab, and then select Check Accessibility. The Accessibility Checker pane appears on the right side of the window, and potential accessibility problems are listed in the pane.
- To see a description of a problem and get suggestions for fixing it, select the item in the list.
After you fix a problem, select Recheck Document to check your document again for that problem and any others that may have been introduced when you fixed the first problem.
In conclusion, Microsoft Documents Accessibility Training is an important step to making sure that everyone can access and benefit from your work. With a few simple steps, you can easily create more inclusive and accessible documents that are easier for people with disabilities or special needs to read and comprehend.
We hope this article has helped clarify the process of making office files more accessible, so take some time today to review our five steps to create accessible documents optimized for full inclusion.