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Lynda.com: Creating Accessible Documents in Microsoft Office

In yesterday’s blog post, Accessibility & Moodle, one of the things Jo wrote about was the in-built accessible features in Moodle. However, even if your Moodle pages are accessible, it could all be undermined if the content you are uploading to Moodle is not accessible. This includes anything from Word documents to embedded videos and from PowerPoint presentations to Excel spreadsheets. 

With this in mind you may be asking the question: How can I ensure my content is accessible? 

To help get you started with answering this question, I will be focusing this blog post on the Lynda.com course Creating Accessible Documents in Microsoft Office by Glenna Shaw. It is easy to follow and the whole course only takes 25 minutes and 18 seconds (exactly) to complete. You can also skip the parts that you don’t need. For example, if you don’t have any Excel documents on your Moodle course, just click onto the next topic.

The course is really interactive and provides you with exercise files that you can download in order to work along to the video while you watch.

The course specifics:

This course shows how you can make accessible Office documents in Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. Glenna Shaw, who is an accessibility expert, begins by describing what it’s like for those with visual, hearing, or movement impairments to experience regular Word and Excel files and PowerPoint presentations. Glenna goes through the essential steps of creating documents that are accessible to all those using assistive technology and those not including applying useful headings, formatting tables for ease of use, naming sheet tabs in Excel, using slide layouts and following z-order in PowerPoint and adding captioning to presentations. I particularly like the section on PowerPoint and is something I will be aware of in future when creating my own PowerPoint presentations.

Topics include:

  • Making hyperlinks more accessible
  • How colour impacts accessibility
  • Using heading styles in Word and Excel
  • Formatting tables in Word
  • Naming sheet tabs
  • Using slide layouts and fonts
  • Adding captions to presentations

Watch a preview of the course below:

This is one of my favourite quotes by Glenna Shaw from the course and one thing I will always remember:

Remember, accessibility is for everyone. We all benefit from assistive technologies.

Let us know what you think of this course in the comments. Was it helpful? If you have any general questions about inclusivity & accessibility in Moodle, please get in touch with the TEL team. For more help with creating accessible documents then you can also contact the Digital Training team in ILE.

If you missed any of our previous posts on accessibility, check out Accessibility & Inclusivity: New Digital Accessibility Regulations by Phil and Accessibility & Moodle by Jo.

Thanks for reading!


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