We strongly discourage documents being published on the website as they are often not accessible, meaning they do not comply with Government accessibility guidance. If you do need to publish a document, please ensure that it is accessible. It is very important that you follow the guidance below carefully.
Guidelines for ensuring that your documents are accessible:
- All documents, including PDFs must be fully accessible
- Documents must have an informative and meaningful title
- Text should be left aligned, not justified
- Avoid underlining, except for links
- Do not use colour or shape alone to show meaning
- Do not use images containing text
- All links should be meaningful out of context, without reading the surrounding text. Avoid 'click here' and 'read more'.
- Tables should only be used for data, not for laying out other types of content
- Avoid splitting or merging cells in tables
- Tables must have appropriate alt text
- Each table must have one header row and one header column. The headers should not be visually communicated by formatting the text using size or colour
- Always run your final document through the programme’s accessibility checker before converting to PDF
Additional recommendations for presentations (either PowerPoint or PDF):
- Use unique slide titles, to allow screen readers to skim slides to navigate
- Make hyperlinks, images and tables accessible
- Set reading order of slide content, this is particularly important if there is more than one text box. Screen readers read the elements of a slide in the order they were added in, which might be different from the intended order.
Useful resources on accessible documents
- A GOV.UK blog on the pitfalls of PDF's (GOV.UK)
- Check the accessibility of a document (WebAIM)
- University of Oxford guidance on creating accessible documents
- Creating accessible handouts and documents (University of Oxford Centre for Teaching and Learning)
- Publishing accessible documents (GOV.UK)
Questions about creating an accessible document?
Dominik Lukeš, Learning Technologist in Centre for Teaching and Learning offers 15 minute editalong consultations for Oxford staff to have a document or presentation reviewed for readability and accessibility.