Word 2007 Section 508 Accessibility Checklist

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Icon depicting missing alt text for various elements

Missing Alt Text (Picture, Text Box, Other elements)


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Requirements for 508 compliance

Provide alternative text or descriptions for non-decorative images, images within a link, form fields, and other interface elements.


How to test

Check whether alternate text has been used and is appropriate / sufficient


To examine alternate text for images:

Note: To check multiple pictures in a document, the Size (Alternative Text) Dialog box can remain open while the various pictures are selected.


How to fix

Add alternate text for pictures, charts, shapes etc.:

For images depicting text

Note: A detailed guide is available for determining content for alternative text in different situations (see below).

Remove alternative text for decorative or formatting images

Note: Null alt text (no alt text or a single space character) is acceptable for decorative and redundant images, although an error will be generated in the checker.

Note: A detailed guide is available for determining content for alternative text in different situations (see below).

Text boxes (do not use Text Boxes):

Note: The content of text boxes does not get read by screen reading software used by people who are non-sighted or who have low vision. Therefore, it is never acceptable to use text boxes in documents that are intended to be distributed in MS Word format. If text box use is absolutely necessary for layout, it is necessary to convert the file to an accessible format.

Note: The content of text boxes does not get read by screen reading software used by people who are non-sighted or who have low vision. Therefore, it is never acceptable to use text boxes in documents that are intended to be distributed in MS Word format. If text box use is absolutely necessary for layout, it is necessary to convert the file to an accessible format.

Follow detailed guidance for alternate text:


Cover page of the Alternate text for images guide.

Use the Alternate text for images guide to determine content for alternative text in different situations. The guide covers the following topics:

Use the Alternate text for images guide to determine content for alternative text in different situations. The guide covers the following topics:


Examples

Use programmatically discoverable headings to logically structure content.

Correct:

(Select the image to download example file in MS Word format)


A paragraph of text with four links, each of which has a unique identifier in plain English.

Incorrect:

(Select the image to download example file in MS Word format)


A paragraph of text with four links, three of which has a unique web address, but there is no link in plain English. Another link has the generic identifier of
Rationale

Provide alternative text or descriptions for non-decorative images, images within a link, form fields, and other interface elements.

People who are blind or have low vision may need additional information presented as text so they can access information and control interface elements. Complex images may require detailed descriptions to convey important or useful information. For instance, provide a more detailed description for a chart demonstrating a growth trend.

Legal References

508 references:

1194.21(d); 1194.21(f); 1194.22(a); 1194.22(i); 1194.22(l); 1194.22(n); 1194.31(a); 1194.31(b).

WCAG references:

1.1.1-H37.

All Microsoft Word Requirements