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Accessibility Guide

A guide to accessible content!

Microsoft Word Accessibility Checklist

Microsoft Word Document Layout and Format

  • Does the document exclude flashing or flickering text?
  • Are the pages are numbered?
  • If footnotes present, are they made through MS Word?
  • If color is used as an emphasis in the text, is there an alternate method present (underline, bold, etc.)?
  • Is bullet or numbering style used instead of typed characters (hyphens, asterisks)?
  • Are the page layouts designed without the use of tables?
  • Are tracked changes turned off?
  • Are all comments through the review process removed?
  • Have you reviewed the document in print preview to ensure that its final formatting is appropriate?
  • Are all URL’s properly hyperlinked and display full URL, like (University of Houston – Downtown Library, so that they can be accessed from the document?

Document Images

  • Do all images presented have an alternative text description?
  • Do complex images like charts, graphs, etc. have descriptive text after it to relay information?
  • Is the document free of background images or watermarks?

Document Tables

  • Are the tables created using the table structure (not free form using tabs)?
  • Are tables organized in a logical reading order from left to right, top to bottom?
  • Do all data tables have a header row?
  • Are the tables free from merged cells?
  • Are tables described and labeled (small data tables in a presentation might not need an explanation)?
  • In table properties, is “allow row to break across pages” unchecked?

Additional Considerations

  • Have you run Document Inspector on all Microsoft products for potential issues and resolve any concerns?
    • To access Document Inspector, go to File, click on Info, and then Check for issues. Click Inspect Document.
  • Have you run Microsoft Accessibility Checker and fixed all errors or warnings?
    • To access Document Inspector, go to File, click on Info, and then Check for issues. Click Check Accessibility.
  • If document image/material cannot be made accessible (i.e. organizational chart or infographic), is there a separate version of the document in a written format provided?
  • Have you used one of the fonts recommended (Times New Roman, Verdana, Arial, Tahoma, Helvetica or Calibri)?