Accessible PDFs

Accessibility should be built into a document before converting it to a PDF. However, if you do have a PDF that needs to be checked for accessibility, making PDFs accessible has become easier with newer versions of Adobe Acrobat Pro. Acrobat Pro now contains a Make Accessible option that will scan documents and automatically adjust some settings and alert you to other settings that will need to be manually adjusted. When setting out to convert a PDF, be sure to check what version of Adobe Acrobat you have as many people have different versions and settings will vary.

Making a PDF from Microsoft Word  

  1. When saving the Word document select PDF in the File menu.
  2. Select the Options button and make sure the Document structure tags for accessibility and Create bookmarks using Headings options are selected.
  3. Click OK and Save. This will tag all of the text formatting, so page headings and lists are correctly interpreted by a screen reader.
  4. Save your original files (PPT, Word) MS Office 2011 (for Mac) Microsoft Word & PowerPoint 2011 for the Mac cannot produce a fully accessible PDF.

Create and Verify PDF Accessibility (Acrobat Pro)