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Make your Digital Media Projects Accessible

1. Create alt-text for images

Images used to present information only through visuals are not accessible to people who are visually impaired. The purpose of alt-text is to provide a description of the contents of an image. Alt-text is to provide text for individuals who can't see images.

  • Add alternative text to any images that convey information or has a function. Make sure the text alternative serves the equivalent purpose as the non-text content. In other words, if you swapped the image with the text alternative, the person reading the text alternative would be able to receive the same information and perform the same image-related tasks as a person who is able to see the image.
  • For decorative images, simply enter decorative. A screen reader will announce "image, decorative" and the user will understand the image does not relay any pertinent information.
  • For linked images, convey the destination of the link in the alt attribute.
  • Communicate the content and function of the image.
    • Do not put the words "image of..." or "graphic of..." at the start of the alt text.
    • Do not use the filename as the text alternative, such as "Oct.jpg".
  • Do not repeat the same information contained in an adjacent caption or surrounding text.

2. Carefully consider the use of colour

Colour choice affects some people's ability to receive information. Follow the guidelines below to select a colour palette that is accessible to your users.

  • Use a colour contrast tool to ensure that the contrast between the link and the surrounding text is at least 3:1.
  • Any information presented only through colour cues may not by seen by people who are visually impaired. This includes information indicating an action, prompting a response, or distinguishing a visual element.
  • Ensure that any information presented only through colour cues is available in text or through other (non-colour) visual cues. Try viewing the page in grey-scale to determine what information us unavailable when viewing the page in this state. 
  • For complex graphs or data, use patterns or shapes in addition to colour to convey differences.
  • Recommended colour contrast tools:

3. Ensure correct Z order (reading order) for screen readers

Z order is the order in which objects are placed on the slide. A screen reader will read these objects from bottom to top in the selection pane. 

  1. In the Editing tab, click the select dropdown, and click selection pane. The selection pane will show all elements located on the slide you are working on. 

where to locate the dropdown menu to open the selection pane.

  1. Ensure all text is in the order you want it to be read, keeping in mind Z order is read from bottom to top. 

the selection pane and how to properly organize the z order.

4. Choose a legible font

To improve accessibility and legibility and to avoid confusion, follow the guidelines below to select a more accessible font for your users.

  • Choose a Sans Serif font. Sans Serif fonts are fonts without small decorative lines that are added as embellishment to the basic form of a character.
    • Example of Serif font: Time New Roman
    • Example pf a Sans Serif Font: Arial
  • Use a minimum 12 point font for the body of the text.

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