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Creating Accessible PDFs

*IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT YOU CREATE HIGH QUALITY, HIGH RESOLUTION SCAN(S) OF THE ORIGINAL PRINT MATERIAL(S) TO ENSURE ACCESS.



It is important for faculty to learn the steps to create accessible PDF's. This ensures students with vision or reading impairments who rely on text-to-speech software have access to course readings. Software programs such as Adobe Acrobat/Professional, OmniPage, and ABBYY Fine Reader have Optical Character Recognition (OCR) capability to create an accessible PDF.

You may download a free 30 day trial of Adobe Acrobat Pro at https://www.acrobat.com/free-trial-download.html.

You are welcome to convert PDF's in the Services for Students with Disabilities lab at UU119 and other locations on campus:

1. You may sign out a laptop through SSD
2. Adobe Acrobat Pro is also available on the Macbook desktops in the Library Pods.
3. E Reserves through library services will post accessible PDFs

Start by determining if your PDF is already accessible by following the 'Test the PDFs Accessibility' steps below. 

Test the PDFs Accessibility

Follow these steps in Adobe Reader (a free download) or Adobe Acrobat to hear the text read aloud.

If the document reads aloud, but the text is read out of order, adding "tags" to the document may help.

In Adobe Acrobat, choose "Advanced" > Accessibility > Add Tags to Document. (This command adequately tags most standard layouts so text-to-speech software reads the PDF in the correct order, but it cannot always correctly interpret the structure and reading order of complex page elements.)

IF YOU DETERMINE THE PDF IS NOT ACCESSIBLE:

Once your PDF document is "opened" in Adobe Acrobat Pro:1. Click on "Tools."

2. Under the "Recognize Text" click on "In This File

3. In the box that pops up click "OK".

4. If the box pops up that asks if you want to ignore future errors check the box and click "OK".

5. Go to "File" and "Save" the document so it overwrites the previous one.

Tips to Remember

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Last Updated: 2/4/14