Use a screen reader to explore and navigate OneNote

This article is for people with visual or cognitive impairments who use a screen reader program such as Microsoft’s Narrator, JAWS, or NVDA with Microsoft 365 products. This article is part of the Microsoft 365 screen reader support content set where you can find more accessibility information on our apps. For general help, visit Microsoft Support home.

Use OneNote with your keyboard and a screen reader to explore and navigate the different views and move between them. We have tested it with Narrator, JAWS, and NVDA, but it might work with other screen readers as long as they follow common accessibility standards and techniques.

Notes: 

In this topic

Navigate the main view

Press F6 (forward) or Shift+F6 (backward) to cycle through the main view elements in the following order:

  • The main content area, which shows the contents of the current page. You hear the page title.

  • The full page view button in the upper-right corner of the main content area. You hear "Navigation controls," followed by the current view mode. For more information, refer to Full page view.

  • The row of ribbon tabs at the top of the screen. It groups the app options by different categories. You hear "Ribbon tabs," followed by the currently selected tab.

    • To browse the tabs on the ribbon, press the Right or Left arrow key.

    • The row contains tabs such as File, Home, Insert, Review, and View, as well as the feedback button.

    • The ribbon containing the options specific to the currently selected tab is located immediately below the row of ribbon tabs. To move the focus to the ribbon, press the Down arrow key once. To move on the ribbon, use the Right or Left arrow key. You can also use keyboard shortcuts to select options directly.

  • The notebook picker below the ribbon. You hear the name of the current notebook.

  • The row of section tabs on the right side of the notebook picker. The row contains tabs for all the sections in the current notebook. You hear "Sections," followed by the name of the current section.

  • The pane of page tabs on the right side of the main content area. It contains tabs for all the pages in the current section. You hear "Pages," followed by the title of the current page.

  • The search box above the pane of page tabs. You can search the current page, section, section group, or notebook, or all notebooks. You hear: "Search."

Switch between content blocks, pages, sections, and notebooks

Each OneNote notebook is divided into sections, which are further divided into pages. Each page contains the title and date of the page as well as one or more note containers where you add the page content. Screen readers announce the note containers as “Content blocks.”

  • To move between the content blocks, do one of the following:

    • Press Alt+Down or Up arrow key.

    • Press Ctrl+A three times to select all content blocks on the page, and then press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to move between them.

    • With Narrator, press the SR key+Right or Left arrow key.

  • To quickly move to another page in the current section, press Alt+Control+G, press the Up or Down arrow key to find the page you want, and then press Spacebar. The selected page opens in the main content area, and the focus moves to the page title.

  • To quickly move to another section in the current notebook, press Shift+Control+G, press the Left or Right arrow key until you find the section you want, and then press Spacebar. The pane of page tabs shows the page tabs of the section. The main content area shows the last page you visited in the selected section, and the focus moves to the page title.

  • To quickly switch to another notebook, press Ctrl+G, press the Up or Down arrow key until you find the notebook you want, and then press Spacebar. The selected notebook opens. The main content area shows the last page you visited in the notebook, and the focus moves to the page.

Navigate between views

In addition to the main view, OneNote has other useful views and windows.

File menu

In the File menu, you can access options for creating a new notebook, opening, sharing, and printing a notebook, or accessing your Office account information.

  1. Press Alt+F to open the File menu.

  2. To move between the menu tabs, press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear the one you want.

  3. To move the focus to the tab specific options, press the Tab key once. Use arrow keys to navigate the tab, and press Enter to select.

  4. To close the File menu and return to the main view, press Esc.

Options window

You can review and change the OneNote app settings such as personalization, proofreading settings, and language preferences in the Options window.

  1. To open the Options window, press Alt+F, T.

  2. To move between the option categories, press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear the one you want.

  3. To move the focus to the category specific options, press the Tab key once. Press the Tab key (forward) or Shift+Tab (backward) to move between the different options in a category, and press Spacebar to switch the option in focus on or off.

  4. To apply your changes and close the Options window and return to the main view, press Enter. To exit the window without saving your changes, press Esc.

Use the full page view

When you use the full page view, all main view elements except the main content area and the button for switching views are hidden. This makes it easier for you and your screen reader to navigate through a page.

  • To switch to full page view, press F6 until you hear "Navigation controls, normal view," and press Enter.

  • To return to normal view, press F6 until you hear "Navigation controls, full page view," and press Enter.

See also

Use a screen reader to share and collaborate on notebooks in OneNote

Use a screen reader to insert content to notebooks in OneNote

Keyboard shortcuts in OneNote

Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneNote

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Microsoft 365

Use OneNote for Mac with your keyboard and VoiceOver, the built-in macOS screen reader, to explore and navigate the different views and move between them.

Notes: 

  • New Microsoft 365 features are released gradually to Microsoft 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you can get new features faster, join the Office Insider program.

  • This topic assumes that you are using the built-in macOS screen reader, VoiceOver. To learn more about using VoiceOver, go to VoiceOver Getting Started Guide.

In this topic

Navigate the main view

Press F6 (forward) or Shift+F6 (backward) to cycle through the main view elements in the following order:

  • The main content area or canvas, which shows the contents of the current page.

  • The Quick Access Toolbar at the top of the screen. It contains the Undo and Redo buttons, as well as the buttons for customizing the Quick Access Toolbar and sending feedback to Microsoft.

  • The row of ribbon tabs below the Quick Access Toolbar. It groups the app options by different categories. You hear the name of the currently selected tab.

    • The row contains tabs, such as Home, Insert, and View, as well as the Synch status, Tell Me, and Share buttons.

    • To navigate between the tabs, press Control+Option+Right or Left arrow key.

      • The ribbon containing the options specific to the currently selected tab is located immediately below the row of ribbon tabs.

      • To navigate from the ribbon tabs to the ribbon, press Control+Option+Spacebar, and press the Tab key until you hear "Entering," followed by the name of the tab, and "Tab commands scroll area."

      • To navigate between options on the ribbon, press the Right or Left arrow key.

  • On the vertical sidebar on the left of the screen, the button to show or hide the navigation pane. You hear: "Notebooks, selected." The sidebar also contains buttons to search your notes and show a list of your recent notes. To browse the options on the sidebar, press Control+Option+Right or Left arrow key.

Learn the layout of the navigation pane 

From the navigation pane, you can navigate to and open a notebook, browse and open the sections and pages in a notebook, and add new sections and pages.

Explore the navigation pane

The navigation pane contains the following elements:

  • The notebook picker dropdown menu and the Sort pages button at the top of the pane.

  • Below the notebook picker and the Sort pages button, the pane is divided into two columns:

    • The list of sections in the left column shows the sections in the notebook and the Add section button.

    • The list of pages in the right column shows the pages in the selected section and the Add page button.

Navigate the navigation pane

  1. To move the focus to the navigation pane, press F6 or Shift+F6 until you hear: "Notebooks, selected." Then press the Tab key until you hear the name of the current notebook. The focus is now on the notebook picker.

  2. To move forward to the other elements in the navigation pane, press the Tab key repeatedly. The Add page button is the last element in the pane. To cycle backward in the navigation pane, press Shift+Tab.

Switch between content blocks, pages, sections, and notebooks

Each OneNote notebook is divided into sections, which are further divided into pages. Each page contains the title and date of the page as well as one or more note containers where you add the page content. Screen readers announce the note containers as “Content blocks.”

  • To move between the content blocks, press Control+Option+Right or Left arrow key.

  • To quickly move to another page within the current section, press Command+Control+G, press the Up and Down arrow keys until you find the page you want, and then press Return. The selected page opens in the main content area, and the focus moves to the page title or a content block.

  • To quickly move to another section in the current notebook, press Shift+Control+G, and then press the Up or Down arrow key until you find the section you want. The pages list shows the pages in the selected section, and the last page you visited opens in the main content area. To move the focus to the page title, press F6 once.

  • To quickly switch to another notebook, press Control+G, press the Up or Down arrow key until you find the notebook you want, and then press Control+Option+Spacebar. The sections show the sections of the notebook, and the section you last visited is selected. The last page you visited opens, and the focus moves to the page title.

Tip: To search notebooks, press Command+F, type your search text and press Return.

Navigate between views

In addition to the main view, OneNote for Mac has other useful views.

File menu

In the File menu, you can access commands such as New, Open, Sync, Share, and Print.

  1. To open the File menu, do one of the following:

    • Press Fn+Control+F2, F, and press Control+Option+Spacebar.

    • Press Control+Option+M, press Control+Option+Right arrow key until you hear "File," and then press Control+Option+Spacebar.

  2. To move between options in the File menu, press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear the one you want, and then Control+Option+Spacebar to select.

    Tip: If you want to close the File menu without making a selection and return to the main view, press Esc.

Preferences dialog box

In the OneNote Preferences dialog box, you can review and change settings such as spelling, navigation, and privacy preferences.

  1. To open the OneNote Preferences dialog box, press Command+Comma (,).

  2. To move between the option categories, press the Tab key or Shift+Tab until you hear the one you want, and then press Control+Option+Spacebar to select it.

  3. To browse the options in a category, press the Tab key or Shift+Tab. To select an option, press Control+Option+Spacebar.

  4. To close the dialog box and return to the main view, press Esc.

See also

Use a screen reader to share and collaborate on notebooks in OneNote

Use a screen reader to insert content to notebooks in OneNote

Keyboard shortcuts in OneNote

Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneNote

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Microsoft 365

Use OneNote for iOS with VoiceOver, the built-in iOS screen reader, to explore and navigate the different views and move between them.

Notes: 

  • New Microsoft 365 features are released gradually to Microsoft 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you can get new features faster, join the Office Insider program.

  • This topic assumes that you are using the built-in iOS screen reader, VoiceOver. To learn more about using VoiceOver, visit Apple accessibility.

In this topic

Navigate the Notebooks view

The Notebooks view lists your most recent notebooks. It contains the following areas and elements:

  • The toolbar at the top of the screen with the following elements:

    • The account settings button in the upper-left corner of the screen. You hear your username, followed by "Open your account settings." The button opens the account settings menu where you can access your Microsoft account and the app settings and help.

    • The Notifications button to display your OneNote notifications.

    • The Edit button in the upper-right corner of the screen. It lets you organize the list of your notebooks, sections, or pages.

  • The header row below the toolbar containing the following elements:

    • The Notebooks heading.

    • The New notebook button to create a new notebook.

  • The Recent Notes button which opens a list of your most recent pages.

  • The list of your notebooks.

  • The More Notebooks button which lets you browse for additional notebooks and add them to the list of notebooks.

  • The tab bar at the bottom of the screen with buttons for opening the Notebooks, Search, and Sticky Notes tabs.

To navigate the Notebooks view, swipe right or left to move between the elements. Double-tap the screen to select.

Note: If you have used OneNote for iOS before, it opens in the view you last used.

Switch between views

  1. To move between the Notebooks, Search, and Sticky Notes tabs, tap near the bottom of the screen with four fingers. You hear "Tab bar," followed by the name of the currently focused tab.

  2. Swipe left or right until you hear the name of the tab you want, and then double-tap the screen. The selected tab view is displayed:

    • The Notebooks tab shows the Notebooks view.

    • The Search tab has a search text field which you can use to search your notebooks and Sticky Notes.

    • The Sticky Notes tab lets you access and create Microsoft Sticky Notes directly from the OneNote for iOS app.

Explore a notebook

Each OneNote notebook is divided into sections, which are further divided into pages.

The Sections view

When you select and open a notebook from the Notebooks view, the Sections view opens showing all sections and section groups in the current notebook. You hear: "Sections, heading." In the Sections view, you can browse, organize, and open sections. You can also create new sections.

Explore the Sections view

The Sections view contains the following areas and elements:

  • The toolbar at the top of the screen with the following elements:

    • In the upper-left corner of the screen, the Back button to return to the Notebooks view.

    • The name of the current notebook.

    • The More actions button to access the app settings or an option to share the current notebook.

    • The Edit button to delete, move or copy, rename, password protect, or change the color of the selected sections.

  • The Sections heading with the New section button to create a new section.

  • The list of the sections in the current notebook.

Navigate the Sections view

  • To navigate around the Sections view, swipe right or left with one finger.

  • To move back to the Notebooks view, tap near the top of the screen with four fingers. You hear "Back to section list for," followed by the name of the notebook, and "Back button." Double-tap the screen.

The Pages view

When you select and open a page from the Sections view, the Pages view opens and shows a list of the pages in the selected section. You hear: "Pages, heading." In the Pages view, you can browse, organize, and open pages. You can also create new blank pages or pages with lists.

Explore the Pages view

The Pages view contains the following areas and elements:

  • The toolbar at the top of the screen with the following elements:

    • In the upper-left corner of the screen, the Back button to return to the Sections view.

    • The name of the current section.

    • The More actions button to sort pages, access the app settings, or share the current notebook.

    • The Edit button to delete, move or copy, and reorder the selected page.

  • The Pages heading.

  • The list of the pages in the current section.

  • The New page with list button to create a new page with a list.

  • The New page button to create a new blank page.

Navigate the Pages view

  • To navigate around the Pages view, swipe right or left with one finger.

  • To move back to the Sections view, tap near the top of the screen with four fingers. You hear "Back to section list for," followed by the name of the notebook, and "Back button." Double-tap the screen.

The notes page

When you select and open a page in the Pages view, the page content is displayed. On a page, you can edit and add content, such as text and images. You can also rename the page, add digital ink, move the page to another location, delete the page, and open Immersive Reader.

Explore a page

A page contains the following areas and elements:

  • The toolbar at the top of the screen with the following elements:

    • The Back button in the upper-left corner to return to the list of pages.

    • The Open Ink toolbox button to start inking.

    • The Page actions button to access options, such as Delete Page, Move Page, Immersive Reader, the app settings, and more.

  • The editable page title text field.

  • The page date and time text field.

  • The page canvas with one or more content blocks which contain the actual content of the page.

Navigate a page

  • To navigate around a page, swipe right or left with one finger.

  • To move back to the Pages view, tap near the top of the screen with four fingers. You hear "Back to section list for," followed by the name of the notebook, and "Back button." Double-tap the screen.

See also

Use a screen reader to share and collaborate on notebooks in OneNote

Use a screen reader to insert content to notebooks in OneNote

Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneNote

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Microsoft 365

Use OneNote for Android with TalkBack, the built-in Android screen reader, to explore and navigate the different views and move between them.

Notes: 

  • New Microsoft 365 features are released gradually to Microsoft 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you can get new features faster, join the Office Insider program.

  • This topic assumes that you are using the built-in Android screen reader, TalkBack. To learn more about using TalkBack, go to Android accessibility.

In this topic

Navigate the main view

The main view in the OneNote for Android app is also called the Home tab. It contains the following areas and elements:

  • User account button in the upper-left corner of the screen. It opens the Account menu where you can manage your accounts.

  • The toolbar below the User account button containing the following elements:

    • A time stamp dividing the recently updated pages by the time they were last updated. You hear, for example, "Last week."

    • The Filter button to filter what is shown on the Home tab.

  • The list of your most recent notes pages and Sticky Notes. To scroll the list, swipe up or down with two fingers.

  • The Take a new note button to create new Sticky Notes.

  • The tab bar at the bottom of the screen. It contains buttons to switch between the Home, Search, and Notebooks tabs.

To navigate the main view, swipe right or left. Double-tap the screen to select.

Note: If you have used OneNote for Android before, it opens in the view you used last.

Switch between views

  1. To move between the Home, Search, and Notebooks tabs, drag your finger near the bottom of the screen until you hear the name of the tab you want to open. Double-tap the screen to open the tab. The selected tab is displayed:

    • The Home tab shows the list of your recent pages and Sticky Notes.

    • The Search tab has a search box which you can use to search your notebooks and Sticky Notes.

    • The Notebooks tab shows the list of your most recent notebooks. It also contains the New notebook button to create a new notebook and the More Notebooks link to access a list of older notebooks.

Explore a notebook

Each OneNote notebook is divided into sections which are further divided into pages.

The Sections view

When you open a notebook from the Notebooks tab, the Sections view opens. It shows a list of all sections and section groups in the current notebook. In the Sections view, you can browse, organize, and open sections. You can also create a new section.

Explore the Sections view

The Sections view contains the following areas and elements:

  • The toolbar at the top of the screen with the following elements:

    • In the upper-left corner of the screen, the button to return to the Notebooks tab. You hear: "Navigate up, button."

    • The name of the current notebook.

    • The New section button to create a new section.

    • The More options button to send feedback on the app to Microsoft.

  • The Sections heading with the New section button to create a new section.

  • The list of sections and section groups in the current notebook.

Navigate the Sections view

  • To navigate around the Sections view, swipe right or left with one finger.

  • To move back to the Notebooks tab, drag a finger near the lower-right corner of the screen until you hear "Notebooks tab," and then double-tap the screen.

The Pages view

When you select and open a page from the Sections view or the Home tab, the Pages view opens and shows a list of all pages in the selected section. In the Pages view, you can browse, organize, and open pages. You can also create a new blank page.

Explore the Pages view

The Pages view contains the following areas and elements:

  • The toolbar at the top of the screen with the following elements:

    • In the upper-left corner of the screen, the button to return to the Sections view. You hear: "Navigate up, button."

    • The name of the current section and notebook.

    • The More options button to send feedback on the app to Microsoft.

    • The Edit button to delete, move or copy, and reorder the selected page.

  • The Pages heading.

  • The list of the pages in the current section.

  • The Take a new note button to create a new page.

Navigate the Pages view

  • To navigate around the Pages view, swipe right or left with one finger.

  • To move back to the Sections view, drag a finger near the upper-left corner of the screen until you hear "Navigate up, button," and then double-tap the screen.

The notes page

When you select and open a page in the Pages view or the Home tab, the page content is displayed. On a page, you can edit and add content, such as text and images. You can also rename, share, or delete the page, add digital ink, and access the app settings.

Explore a page

A page contains the following areas and elements:

  • The toolbar at the top of the screen with the following elements:

    • In the upper-left corner, the button to return to the Page view. You hear: "Navigate up button."

    • The Ink button to add digital ink.

    • The More options button to access options, such as Share page, Delete pageAdd to Home screen, the app settings, and more.

  • The page canvas. Usually, the canvas contains an editable page title and date, and one or more content blocks with the page content.

Navigate a page canvas

  • As TalkBack doesn't announce the page canvas, to move the focus to the canvas, navigate to the More options button, and then swipe right once.

  • To navigate around the canvas, drag two fingers on the screen. To place the focus to an element on the canvas, tap the screen with two fingers.

  • To move back to the Pages view, drag a finger near the upper-left corner of the screen until you hear "Navigate up, button," and then double-tap the screen.

See also

Use a screen reader to organize notebooks, sections, and pages in OneNote

Use a screen reader to insert content to notebooks in OneNote

Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneNote

Set up your device to work with accessibility in Microsoft 365

Use OneNote for Windows 10 with your keyboard and a screen reader to explore and navigate the different views and move between them. We have tested it with Narrator, JAWS, and NVDA, but it might work with other screen readers as long as they follow common accessibility standards and techniques.

Notes: 

In this topic

Navigate the main view

Press F6 (forward) or Shift+F6 (backward) to cycle through the main view elements in the following order:

  • The main content area, which shows the contents of the current page. You hear the title of the page.

  • The row of ribbon tabs at the top of the screen. It groups options by different categories. You hear "Ribbon," followed by the currently selected tab. The row contains tabs, such as File, Home, Insert, Review, and View, as well as the feedback button.

    • To browse the tabs on the ribbon, press the Right or Left arrow key.

    • The ribbon containing the options specific to the currently selected tab is located immediately below the row of ribbon tabs. To move the focus to the ribbon, press the Down arrow key once. To browse the options on the ribbon, use the Right and Left arrow keys. Alternatively, you can use keyboard shortcuts to select options directly.

  • The sidebar on the left of the screen. It contains buttons to show or hide the navigation pane, search your notes, and show a list of recent notes. You hear: "Navigation." To browse the options on the sidebar, press the Tab key or Shift+Tab.

  • The navigation pane to the right of the sidebar. Here you can access your notebooks and lists of the sections and pages within them. You hear: "Notebook picker." To learn how to navigate this pane, refer to Navigate the navigation pane.

Note: While cycling through the main view elements, if you do not hear "Notebook picker," press F6 until you hear "Navigation," and then press Enter.

Navigate the navigation pane

The navigation pane contains the notebook picker dropdown menu and the Sort pages button at the top. Below the menu and button, the area is divided into two columns:

  • The list of sections on the left shows the sections in the selected notebook and the Add section button.

  • The list of pages on the right shows the pages in the selected section and the Add page button.

Press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to cycle between the notebook picker, list of sections, the Add section button, list of pages, the Add page button, and Sort pages button. 

Switch between content blocks, pages, sections, and notebooks

Each OneNote notebook is divided into sections which are further divided into pages. Each page contains the title and date of the page as well as one or more note containers where you add the page content. Screen readers announce a note container as “Content block.”

  • To move between the content blocks, do one of the following:

    • Press Alt+Down or Up arrow key.

    • Press Ctrl+A three times to select all content blocks on the page, and then press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to cycle between them.

    • With Narrator, press the SR key+Right or Left arrow key.

  • To quickly move to another page within the current section, press Alt+Ctrl+G, press the Up or Down arrow key to find the page you want, and then press Spacebar. The selected page opens in the main content area, and the focus moves to the page title.

  • To quickly move to another section in the current notebook, press Shift+Ctrl+G, press the Up or Down arrow key until you find the section you want. The pages list shows the pages in the selected section, and the last page you visited opens in the main content area. To move the focus to the page title, press F6.

  • To quickly switch to another notebook, press Ctrl+G, press the Up or Down arrow key until you find the notebook you want, and then press Spacebar. The selected notebook opens in the main content area showing the last page you visited, and the focus moves to the page title.

Navigate between views

In addition to the main view, OneNote for Windows 10 has other useful views and modes.

Settings menu

In the OneNote for Windows 10Settings menu, you can access the app settings for syncing and proofreading.

  1. Press Alt. The focus moves to the row of ribbon tabs.

  2. Press the Right arrow key until you hear "More," and then press Enter.

  3. Press the Down arrow key until you hear "Settings," and press Enter. The Settings pane opens.

  4. To move between the settings categories, press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear the one you want, and press Enter to select it. Press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to move between the different options in a category, and then press Spacebar to turn the currently highlighted option on or off.

  5. When you're done, press Esc to close the Settings menu.

Full screen mode

When you use the full screen mode, all main view elements except the main content area and the simplified Draw ribbon are hidden. This makes it easier for you and your screen reader to navigate through a page.

  1. Press Alt to move the focus to the row of ribbon tabs, and then press the Right arrow key until you hear "Enter full screen mode." Press Enter to select. You're now using the full screen mode. The focus is on the main content area.

  2. To exit the full screen mode, press Alt. The focus moves to the ribbon. Press Shift+Tab once. You hear: "Exit full screen drawing." Press Enter to return to the normal screen mode.

Use Tell Me

To find an option or perform an action quickly, use the Search text field. To learn more about the Search feature, go to Find what you need with Microsoft Search.

Note: Depending on the Office version of you are using, the Search text field at the top of the app window might be called Tell Me instead. Both offer a largely similar experience, but some options and search results can vary.

  1. Select the item or place in your document, presentation, or spreadsheet where you want to perform an action. For example, in an Excel spreadsheet, select a range of cells.

  2. To go to the Search text field, press Alt+Q.

  3. Type the search words for the action that you want to perform. For example, if you want to add a bulleted list, type bullets.

  4. Press the Down arrow key to browse through the search results.

  5. When you've found the result that you want, press Enter to select it and to perform the action.

See also

Use a screen reader to share and collaborate on notebooks in OneNote

Use a screen reader to insert content to notebooks in OneNote

Keyboard shortcuts in OneNote

Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneNote

Use OneNote for the web with your keyboard and a screen reader to explore and navigate the different views and move between them. We have tested it with Narrator in Microsoft Edge and JAWS and NVDA in Chrome, but it might work with other screen readers and web browsers as long as they follow common accessibility standards and techniques.

Notes: 

  • New Microsoft 365 features are released gradually to Microsoft 365 subscribers, so your app might not have these features yet. To learn how you can get new features faster, join the Office Insider program.

  • To learn more about screen readers, go to How screen readers work with Microsoft Office.

  • When you use OneNote for the web, we recommend that you use Microsoft Edge as your web browser. Because OneNote for the web runs in your web browser, the keyboard shortcuts are different from those in the desktop program. For example, you’ll use Ctrl+F6 instead of F6 for jumping in and out of the commands. Also, common shortcuts like F1 (Help) and Ctrl+O (Open) apply to the web browser – not OneNote for the web.

In this topic

Navigate the OneNote for the web opening view

When you open OneNote for the web from office.com, you land on the OneNote opening view. Press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to cycle between the following main elements:

  • The menu bar at the top of the screen. It contains the app launcher button to open other Microsoft apps, the Search text field, and the My Day button to open your Outlook calendar or your To Do items into a pane. It also contains buttons to access the app settings, help, and your user account info.

  • The navigation pane to the left of the screen. It contains shortcut buttons to switch between Office apps, your content on OneDrive, the Office for the web Home page, and the Create button to quickly start a new Office for the web document.

  • The New notebook button.

  • The row of tabs organizing your notebooks in to the following tabs: Recent, Pinned, My notebooks, Shared with me, and Discover.

    • To open a tab, press Enter when you hear its name. You hear the number of documents on the tab. The documents appear immediately after the tab row itself. If a tab has no content, your screen reader announces it, for example, "No shared Office documents."

  • List of the notebooks specific to the selected tab.

Note: Pressing Ctrl+F6 to navigate between landmarks only works in the notebook view, not in the main view.

Navigate the notebook view

When you open a notebook, you land on the notebook view. Press Ctrl+F6 or Shift+Ctrl+F6 to move between the landmarks in the following order:

  • The Microsoft app launcher button on the header banner at the top of the screen. The banner also contains the Notifications, Settings, and Account manager buttons.

  • The row of ribbon tabs below the header banner. It groups options by different categories. You hear the name of the currently selected tab, for example, "Home tab item." It contains tabs such as File, Home, Insert, and View, as well as the Tell Me search box, the Share and Mode menu buttons.

    • To move between the ribbon tabs, use the arrow keys, the Tab key, or Shift+Tab.

    • The ribbon containing the options specific to the currently selected tab is located immediately below the row of ribbon tabs. To navigate from the ribbon tabs to the ribbon, press the Tab key once. You hear the name of the first option on the ribbon. To navigate between options on the ribbon, use the arrow keys, the Tab key, or Shift+Tab.

  • The Show/Hide navigation button for hiding and showing the navigation pane. The button is located on a vertical menu bar on the left of the screen. The vertical menu bar also contains the Search button.

  • The navigation pane containing the notebook picker, the list of sections in the currently opened notebook, and the list of pages in the currently selected section.

  • The main content area.

Navigate the navigation pane

The navigation pane contains the notebook picker dropdown menu and the Sort pages button at the top. Below the menu and button, the area is divided into two columns:

  • The list of sections on the left shows the sections in the selected notebook and the Add section button.

  • The list of pages on the right shows the pages in the selected section and the Add page button.

Press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to cycle between the notebook picker, list of sections, the Add section button, list of pages, the Add page button, and Sort pages button. 

Switch between content blocks, pages, sections, and notebooks

Each OneNote notebook is divided into sections, which are further divided into pages. Each page contains the title and date of the page as well as one or more note containers where you add the page content. Screen readers announce a note container as “Content block.”

  • To move between the content blocks, press Ctrl+A three times to select all content blocks on the page, and then press the Tab key or Shift+Tab to cycle between them.

  • To quickly move to another page within the current section, press Alt+Ctrl+G, press the Up or Down arrow key to find the page you want, and then press Spacebar. The selected page opens in the main content area, and the focus moves to the page title.

  • To quickly move to another section in the current notebook, press Shift+Ctrl+G, press the Up or Down arrow key until you find the section you want. The pages list shows the pages in the selected section, and the last page you visited opens in the main content area. To move the focus to the page title, press F6.

  • To quickly switch to another notebook, press Ctrl+G, press the Up or Down arrow key until you find the notebook you want, and then press Spacebar. The selected notebook opens in the main content area showing the last page you visited, and the focus moves to the page title.

Use Tell Me

To find an option or perform an action quickly, use the Search text field. To learn more about the Search feature, go to Find what you need with Microsoft Search.

Note: Depending on the Office version of you are using, the Search text field at the top of the app window might be called Tell Me instead. Both offer a largely similar experience, but some options and search results can vary.

  1. Select the item or place in your document, presentation, or spreadsheet where you want to perform an action. For example, in an Excel spreadsheet, select a range of cells.

  2. To go to the Search text field, press Alt+Q.

  3. Type the search words for the action that you want to perform. For example, if you want to add a bulleted list, type bullets.

  4. Press the Down arrow key to browse through the search results.

  5. When you've found the result that you want, press Enter to select it and to perform the action.

See also

Use a screen reader to share and collaborate on notebooks in OneNote

Use a screen reader to insert content to notebooks in OneNote

Keyboard shortcuts in OneNote

Basic tasks using a screen reader with OneNote

Technical support for customers with disabilities

Microsoft wants to provide the best possible experience for all our customers. If you have a disability or questions related to accessibility, please contact the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk for technical assistance. The Disability Answer Desk support team is trained in using many popular assistive technologies and can offer assistance in English, Spanish, French, and American Sign Language. Please go to the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk site to find out the contact details for your region.

If you are a government, commercial, or enterprise user, please contact the enterprise Disability Answer Desk.

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