Microsoft Word Documents

Microsoft Word Documents

Microsoft Word documents are everywhere. Learn the basics of creating an accessible Word document and you will be contributing to a much more accessible campus.

Many course materials begin as Word documents, such as syllabus documents and assignment descriptions. While the practice of making documents accessible for screen readers is vital for those requesting accommodations, these practices also improve “scannability” for readers who visually review a page looking for cues about main points, location of resources, and key deadlines in their preview reading of a document.

Use “Styles” to Format Text

Key points to review within the Microsoft Word tutorials listed below include the following:

Draw on the following tutorials to adopt or modify an existing style template for your personal use in the development of your teaching and learning documents.

Develop Practices to Support Images, Graphics, and Data Tables

Through the links provided below, learn about effective practices for embedding “alt text” – alternative, word-based text – that will allow assistive technologies like screen readers to convey descriptions of images, graphics, and tables.

  • Supporting Images via Alt Text – to learn more about titles; captions; incorporation of short, apt alt text descriptions; and empty alt text tagging, see Penn State’s “Image ALT Text in Microsoft Office”.
  • Creating Tables with Proper Headers and Reading Order – to ensure a proper reading order in tables, review the Tables sections within the Portland Community College overview document on “How to Make a Word Document Accessible.”

Keep the LIST Checklist in Mind

The acronym LIST provides a rubric that serves to remind document creators to make Links, Images, Structure, and Tables accessible. The “Is My Document Accessible?” rubric is made available by San Jose State University.


Article ID: 115359
Wed 9/2/20 11:51 AM
Wed 4/7/21 10:37 AM