Creating Screen Reader Friendly Content

One of the salient features of accessible content is that it lends itself well to assistive technologies, especially the screen reader. As you may know, a “screen reader” is a software application that converts the text displayed on a computer screen into synthesized speech. Screen readers are especially useful for improving accessibility for people with visual disability that could vary from impaired vision to total blindness. Users with certain cognitive or learning disabilities, or those who prefer audio to text, also use screen readers. However, for the screen readers to work effectively, it is important that the content is accessible. What does that mean? When an online/electronic document is created it follows a hierarchy in terms of styles or tags such as, heading (H1), sub-heading (H2), etc. that determines the organization of the content. Screen readers use these tags to navigate the document. Screen readers also use tags to provide other information to users, such as, descriptions of visual content, and the organization of data arranged in tables. Adding styles and tags is the quickest way to create accessible online content. Below are some videos that illustrate how a screen reader works and why it is so important to make your content screen reader friendly:

Why Use Accessible Headings:

Why Use Accessible Lists:

Why Use Descriptive Links:

Why Use Accessible Tables:

Why Use Accessible Images:

Why Use Accessible Video Player:

Why Make Accessible Math:

Why Use Accessible PDF:

Portland Community College Videos:
Screen Reader:
Format Accessible Documents:


Photo credit: Person Typing on Laptop,



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