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Brooklyn College Library & Academic IT | Library Guides

Instructional Guides on Creating Accessible OER: PowerPoint (Updated 2020)

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PowerPoint logo. PowerPoint Presentations

PowerPoint Practices

Key PowerPoint Accessibility Tips:
  • PowerPoint presentations tend to be highly visual, and people who are blind or have low vision can understand them more easily if you create your slides with accessibility in mind.
  • Use built-in templates and layouts.
  • Give each slide a unique title.
  • Add alternative text descriptions to images.
  • Use bulleted and numbered lists.
  • Avoid the use of text boxes (use content placeholders on template layouts instead).
  • Tab through each slide to ensure correct reading order.

PowerPoint Accessibility Check

If you are using PowerPoint in your OER you need to determine if they are accessible.

The PowerPoint Accessibility Checker helps you find and fix accessibility issues. It creates a report of the issues it finds, and explains why each issue might create a problem. Finally, it tells you how to fix the issue.

To run the accessibility checker in Windows:

  1. Select "File"
  2. Select "Check for Issues: Inspect Presentation"
  3. Select the "Check Accessibility" in the dropdown menu

To run the accessibility checker on a Mac:

  1. Select Review > Check Accessibility.

If you get a message saying "Unable to run the Accessibility Checker. Cannot check the current file type for accessibility issues"  it just means the file has not been saved to the newest "pptx" version.  

  1. Select "Save As"
  2. Choose "PowerPoint Presentation (*.pptx)"
  3. Run "Check Accessibility" again and you will now see any accessibility issues

Video Instructions: PowerPoint

Attribution: [Academic Algonquin] (2013, Aug. 1) Creating Accessible PowerPoint Presentations [Video File]. Retrieved from

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