Applicable to any print or digital materials including flyers, webpages, posters, in Word, OpenOffice, PDF, HTML formats.
Learn more in-depth concepts about digital and web accessibility and best practices on the LWTech Digital Accessibility Guides and Training webpage.
When creating content, there are a few basic steps that should be followed in order to assure your content is accessible. The core steps needed for accessibility are the same regardless of format or medium you are working in.
A uniform heading structure is often the most important accessibility consideration. Sighted users often scroll the page quickly and look for big, bold text (headings) to get an idea of its structure and content. Screen reader and other assistive technology users also have the ability to navigate documents by heading structure, assuming Heading styles (rather than formatting text to look like headings) are used.
Use heading styles to set your heading text. Pages should be structured in a hierarchical manner:
DO NOT style paragraph/normal text to look like headings if they are creating a new section.
Add alternative text (or alt-text) to images. Alternative text is needed to provide a non-visual means of representing the content or function of an image. Alternative text should be:
Accurate and equivalent—present the same content or function as the image
Succinct—no more than a few words are necessary; rarely a short sentence or two may be appropriate
NOT be redundant—do not provide information that is in the surrounding text
NOT use descriptive phrases—screen reading software identifies images, so do not use phrases such as "image of..." or "graphic of..."
If an image is decorative and does not add to the context of the content, then add a blank space (MS Word) or mark the image as decorative (in PDF).
Follow these principles to create accessible links:
Lists add important hierarchical structure to a document. Use lists to provide the document structure needed for assistive technology users.
There are two types of lists: ordered and unordered.
The purpose of tables is to present data information in a grid, or matrix, and to have columns or rows that show the meaning of the information in the grid. Sighted users scan a table to make associations between data in the table and their appropriate row and/or column headers. Screen reader users make these same associations with tables.
You can add properties to documents so that column headers (headers in the first row of the table) are identified by a screen reader. All tables should follow the guidelines for proper data display:
Tables should NEVER be used to for content layout (e.g. creating multi-columns such as in PDF forms). Screen reader users cannot make sense of content in these tables. In such instances, either a single column should be used, or a column feature in Word or use CSS for web documents to create grid columns.
Applicable to digital and print content.
Creating accessible slides and considering accessibility during presentations enables full participation and engagement for all participants, including those with visual, auditory, cognitive, and mobility impairments, as well as learning disabilities, and mental health conditions.
This checklist is applicable to any presentation application, but the step-by-step how-to’s are provided for Microsoft PowerPoint. For more detailed steps refer to SBCTC’s Accessible PowerPoint Resources.
Delivering your presentation in an accessible manner is just as important as creating accessible slides. For example, describing the content of slides aloud helps those with visual impairments and speaking clearly and not too quickly will help those with cognitive processing differences, ADHA, anxiety, etc.
These steps assume that your PPT file is accessible and error-free.
WARNING: DO NOT use Print As PDF to create your handouts. This will erase all accessibility elements of the presentation
and create a PDF that is not accessible.
LWTech is committed to providing digital content that is in an accessible format to all people wherever possible as per federal guidelines. We will take actions to ensure that all LWTech community members with disabilities have an equal opportunity to access and utilize information materials, technologies, and technology-related services.
Convert documents to accessible formats. Available for all LWTech staff, faculty, students, and community members.
For all brand guideline questions, please contact
Kimberly Goddard, Design Services Manager OR
Leslie Shattuck, Executive Director/Executive Communications Officer
Mon-Fri, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Mon-Thurs, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Friday, Closed to the public
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