Accessible PDF document resources

Accessible documentation is a necessity in today's world. However, creating accessible PDF documents is tedious and time consuming. Whenever possible, use HTML documents instead. If you must create a PDF, follow the steps below.

  1. Start with an accessible source document
  2. Correctly convert the document to a PDF
  3. Check the accessibility of the PDF
  4. Touch up the PDF
  5. Check the accessibility of the corrected PDF

1. Start with an accessible source document

To create a properly tagged PDF, you first need to create an accessible source document. Making a PDF accessible without an accessible source document is much more difficult and takes more time.

  • Make Microsoft documents more accessible: The IU Knowledge Base has resources for creating accessible Microsoft Office documents.
  • NCDAE cheat sheets: The National Center on Disability and Access for Education has several cheat sheets on creating accessible documents with Microsoft Office and Adobe products.

Adobe documentation

Microsoft documentation

2. Correctly convert the document to a PDF

To retain the accessibility of the source document and produce a tagged PDF, convert the document by following the correct method.

  • Acrobat PDFMaker tool: The PDFMaker tool is available in many applications, including Microsoft Office applications. Use this tool to convert your source documents to PDFs to better retain the accessibility features.
  • Create an accessible PDF in Microsoft Word: This Knowledge Base document includes step-by-step instructions for converting a Microsoft Word document into a PDF.

3. Check the accessibility of the PDF

Once you have a PDF, use an accessibility checker to verify the accessibility of the document.

4. Touch up the PDF

Review the results of the accessibility check and touch up any errors. Use Adobe Acrobat DC; the Cloud version gets quarterly updates, including many accessibility enhancements. When making an accessible PDF with Acrobat, be sure to use the newest version, as it will have bug fixes, plus improved workflow and features.

5. Check the accessibility of the corrected PDF

Use the same tools from step three to recheck the accessibility of your PDF.

This is document aumo in the Knowledge Base.
Last modified on 2019-03-21 10:08:06.

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