An Accessibility Scan Says My Document Is Not 508 Compliant. Now What? #AUD8

Eric Turner from the Mt. San Antonio College focused on ways to manage accessibility challenges in documents with a hands-on demonstration of an “easy” way to remediate PDF files.

Turner kicked off his presentation with the definition of web accessibility (content is perceivable, operable, understandable, robust, and conforms)  and a reminder about how our sites need to be in compliance with the WCAG 2.1 guidelines.

In regards to managing inaccessible documents, like PDFs, Turner stressed that the first step should be to see if those files can be converted to web content. If yes, that is the best choice. If not, then the original source file should be made compliant before conversion. Microsoft has added an accessibility checker in all of its programs to help with this process.

Then if you still have to fix a PDF file, he recommended using the tools in Adobe Pro.  Turn on their accessibility checker, run the full check and see what needs to be updated.  If there are many issues, use the Action Wizard.  If you cannot fix with this tool, you might need to use a professional remediator, but many PDFs can be corrected by your team once they learn the steps.  Turner’s team has removed or repaired almost 4,000 PDF files since Jan. 2018.  More details about their process are available at mtsac.edu/accessibility.