Creating Accessible Documents

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Creating Accessible Documents

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Creating Accessible Documents

Karen Wilson, Web Designer

Web Services




Section 508 of The Rehabilitation Act

Electronic and Information Technology

Currently going through modifications to move away from web accessibility standards from the late 1990s

WCAG 2.0 (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0)

Standards that the new Section 508 rule is going to reference


SWOSU Website

Redesign that will address many accessibility issues

How will departments be involved?

Information submitted to post on the SWOSU website

Media (audio and video) must contain captions

Electronic documents

Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF, etc. must be accessible


Content Review

Determine the purpose and intended audience

Writing should match the way users read on website

Headings and subheadings are scanned

Content should be written in short, concise paragraphs

Most important information needs to be placed “above the fold” to ensure that it is visible to a reader who does not scroll

Content should be written to work as a stand-alone webpage and not presume that the reader has arrived through a certain path

Page title must be meaningful and reflect the content of a webpage

Extremely important for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)


Content Review

Links should be descriptive of the information they link to

Example: “Online University Application” NOT “Click Here to Apply”

Images should not contain important text, such as


Captions must be used for audio and video

If accessibility standards cannot be met, the information should be available by alternative means


Original Document in Word


Create document

Run “Check Accessibility”

File / Info / Inspect Document

Convert to PDF


Acrobat XI Pro


Run “Make Accessible” wizard

Tools / Action Wizard / Make Accessible



Reading Order)


Where Do We Go From Here?

Install Acrobat XI Pro

Compile list of existing documents on website

Filtered list on Publications Database

Random documents linked within the department website

Find original documents, if possible, and work through accessibility issues OR recreate documents with proper accessibility steps taken

Convert to PDF, if necessary, making sure the file passes accessibility standards

Send updated files to Web Services (Hayden Harrington)



August 1, 2015


have updated accessible documents to Web


NOTE: This deadline is dependent upon individuals having access to Acrobat X Pro or Acrobat XI Pro by June 2015.

The goal is to meet accessibility standards on 100% of electronic documents by the beginning of Fall 2015 semester

Early summer

Similar workshop as a refresher or for additional department employees



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