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Creating Accessible Publications

Department: Agricultural Communications

InDesign settings

  • Use real bullets and numbered lists from paragraph styles panel. If you want to adjust spacing, etc., do so by right clicking the style name and choosing edit style.
  • Use real tables, not tabbed text.
    • Table title and notes/references must be in separate text boxes (outside of the table)
    • 1st row should be marked as a header row (Table > Convert rows > To header)
    • Use Paragraph Styles to adjust table fonts
  • File > File info. Add title, author, summary, and keywords (provided by editor/client).
  • Check for hyperlinks: Window > Interactive > Hyperlink
  • Name (or rename) your images so that you’ll be able to tell where they go later (for example, fig#_briefdescription).
  • Add alt text to photos (provided by editor/client).
    • Click on photo (with selection tool), then Object > Object Export Options > Alt Text Source: Custom. Then enter alt text* followed by a period.
    • *The alt-text describes in words what is actually pictured in a way that someone with a vision impairment could understand what is in the photo.
    • Tag graphics used only for decoration as Artifact (Tagged PDF > Apply Tag > Artifact) and add double quotation marks as the alt text (“”).
  • Anchor figures/captions and tables/titles/notes near where they should fall in the html/tag order.
    • Select the item, click the blue box near top of item outline and drag near its reference in text. Wait for the anchor symbol to show up to make sure the item is anchored.
  • Open the Articles panel (Window > Articles), and drag your text box(es), photos, and captions into the panel in order. (If your text is threaded and images and tables are anchored, you should need to drag over only the main title, first body text box, and author info box.)
    • Click “hamburger” and check Use for tagging order in tagged PDF.

Package File

File > Package

Export html

  • File > Export > Format: html
  • Choose “same as articles panel” and in Advanced tab check “Don’t include classes”
  • Check for any mistakes in HTML doc.

Export web PDF

  • File > Export > Format: Print
    • Options > General: Check “create tagged PDF” and “hyperlinks,” and change Export Layers to ALL layers.
    • Options > Advanced: Under Accessibility Options, Display title: should be document title; language should be English.
  • Open pdf in Acrobat and check accessibility.
    • Tools > Accessibility > Full Check > Start Checking
    • You’ll get a dialog box indicating either that it passes the check or that you need to address issues.
    • You should get only three errors. Two must be checked manually: color contrast and tag/reading order. Ignore these for now. For the third, tag order, right click and choose “Fix.” Be sure to save the file so this fix will hold.
    • If you get any other errors, they need to be addressed.
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