by Andrew Kirkpatrick
There is a lot of PDF that is generated though Adobe’s PDFMaker plug-in for Microsoft Word. You can quite easily create PDF documents that meet the majority of accessibility needs with very little effort, if you know how. For the CSUN conference, we created a one-page document that helps guide users who may not know much about accessibility so that they can more easily address accessibility in their documents.
This document doesn’t cover every possible issue, but identifies the small number of items that need some attention to avoid the most common issues that authors can prevent. In general, if an author:
- provides equivalents for images in Word
- uses Word’s styles to define structural headings
- identifies table headings for simple tables
- uses Word’s column feture instead of text boxes, and
- enables the generation of tagged PDF
The results are excellent for most documents created in Word. Yes, you can deviate from this path and need to perform repair work to make a PDF document accessible, but to start I want to ensure that authors know what the path to minimize challenges looks like.
This is a first stab at this document, please let us know what you like, if it is useful to you, or any other comments you may have.
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