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Pastel, a guide dog for the blind, with post it note showing how to videos, manual tests, automated tests, and example files Pastel, a guide dog for the blind, with post it note showing manual tests, automated tests, and example files


Using the checklist

The Word 2010 Accessibility Checklist is divided into two sections:

  • Step 1. Perform Manual Tests
  • Step 2. Run the Automated Accessibility Checker

Step 1 will guide you through testing and fixing accessibility issues for which the automated checker does not test. Then Step 2 will provide you with guidance on how to fix the issues that are found by the automated accessibility checker built into Microsoft Word. The automated checker does not test the elements in Step 1, so it is important to conduct Step 1. Also, before running the automated checker, read the instructions in Step 2 for how to properly use the tool.

Step 1. Performing Manual Tests

Scan your document to see if it contains any of the five elements covered under Step 1 in the checklist. For each document element type your document contains, click on the “How to test” for step by step instructions for testing that type of element.

If your formatting fails a test, use the instructions in the “How to fix” section to help you fix your document.

When you have checked your document for all five of the elements in Step 1, move on to Step 2 to find and fix accessibility issues using Word’s built-in Automated Accessibility Checker.

Step 2. Run the Automated Accessibility Checker

First, save your document as a .docx file using the guidance in the checklist – otherwise the automated checker will not work. If you must have your document saved in .doc format, simply save it in .docx, perform the checks and fixes and then save it back to a .doc format.

Next, run the Automated Checker by using keyboard keys: ALT + F + I and then I + F. The Accessibility Checker pane will open on the right side of your screen, and you will see errors appear in the top right pane if your document has accessibility issues. If so, click on the error messages in the pane and you will jump to the problem area in your document.

Return to the Word 508 Accessibility checklist and select a corresponding error messages under Step 2. Click on the “How to fix” link to find instructions to help you fix the errors in your document.

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