Microsoft PowerPoint

Accessible Microsoft PowerPoint Presentations

Microsoft Power Point provides a built-in accessibility checker that will identify accessibility errors, warnings and tips to make your document more accessible.  In addition, this feature offers “how to” instructions to fix accessibility issues.

Microsoft Power Point has excellent resources with in-depth instructions for incorporating accessibly best practices into documents. 

Guidelines for Creating Accessible Microsoft Power Point Presentations

Below are some additional guidelines for creating accessible Power Point presentations.

  • Use the slide templates provided in Power Point Layout.  The templates create an appropriate heading and reading structure for a person using a screen reader to easily navigate your slides. 
  • Do not add text boxes to slides.  A screen reader cannot navigate to read the text inside the box.
  • Create a companion document if you put necessary information in the Notes section of a presentation.  A screen reader cannot navigate to the notes section of Power Point.

Alternative Text Best Practices

Alternative text, or “alt text” describes the content of images, graphs and charts. It should be added to every image that conveys meaning in a Power Point Presentation.  Below is a list of best practices for using alternative text in image heavy presentations. 

  • Write a short and concise description of no longer than 150 characters.
  • Do not use the filename, “photo,” or “image” to describe an image.
  • Indicate the purpose of complex images like charts, graphs and infographics.  
  • Write “decorative” in the alternative text if the image does not add additional meaning to the presentation. 
  • Identify the required action for images that contain a link (i.e., click the image to go to another web page).