Related topics
×
Create accessible PowerPoint presentations
Create accessible PowerPoint presentations

Create slides with an accessible reading order

Your browser does not support video. Install Microsoft Silverlight, Adobe Flash Player, or Internet Explorer 9.

Put the content in your PowerPoint slides in the intended reading order so the screen readers read it correctly for users with a vision or reading disability.

Create slides with proper reading order

  1. On the Home tab, select New Slide.

  2. Select any pre-existing slide layout.

  3. Add your slide content. Make sure that you don't delete or rearrange the default slide elements.

Group objects

If you have complex diagrams or illustrations made of many objects, group the objects into logical units. That way, the screen-reader user can read the grouped units rather than all of the individual objects in them. With grouped units, you'll only need to order the grouped units and not all of the objects in them.

  1. Select Review > Check Accessibility > Reading Order Pane.

  2. In the Reading Order pane, to select multiple objects, press and hold Ctrl and then click each object you want to include in the group.

  3. To group the selected objects, press Ctrl+G.

  4. To add alt text to the group, double-click the group name, type a description for the group, and then press Enter.

Modify the reading order

If you need a custom slide or you've modified the pre-existing slide layout, you can change the object reading order to match the visual layout order. Objects are read from top to bottom order.

  1. Select Review > Check Accessibility > Reading Order Pane.

  2. In the Reading Order pane, to change the reading order, rearrange the objects in the list. Do one of the following:

    • Drag an object to a new location.

    • Select an object and then select  The Move Up button in the Reading Order pane in PowerPoint. (Move Up) or  The Move Down button in the Reading Order pane in PowerPoint. (Move Down).

      Tip: If an object is not important for understanding the meaning of the slide, unselect the item checkbox to exclude it.

  3. To double-check the order, read the objects in the Reading Order pane from top to bottom.

See also

Make your PowerPoint presentations accessible to people with disabilities

Download free, pre-built templates

Save, back up, and recover a file in Microsoft Office

Excel video training

Word for Windows training

PowerPoint for Windows training

A screen reader helps PowerPoint users with a vision or reading disability better understand slide content. Place content in the intended reading order, so the screen reader reads the items correctly.

On the Home tab, select New Slide. Pre-existing templates provided with PowerPoint already maintain an accessible reading order.

Select a layout, add text, images, and other content.

Note: If slide items are rearranged, the reading order may no longer match the visual order. On a custom or modified slide, the reading order may be different from how the items are visually laid out. Users will not understand the content if the screen reader reads the items out of order.

[Screen reader reads:] Picture 22, rectangle 7. Text box 2, Customer Focused Approach. Text box 18, Robust Product Line. Text box 17, Commitment to innovation. Text box 19, 30 years of great customer service. [Screen reader stops reading.]

To set the reading order, go to the Review tab, select the Check Accessibility dropdown, then Reading Order Pane.

Group items together with Ctrl, click, then Ctrl+G. Give alt text to the group that helps users understand the content.

Items are read from top to bottom order.

Select and drag the items to its new spot to match the visual layout order.

If an item is not important for understanding the meaning of the slide, uncheck to exclude it.

Read the items in the pane from top to bottom to double check the order.

Now screen reader users will read the slide content in the same order as sighted users.

Need more help?

Expand your skills

EXPLORE TRAINING >

Get new features first

JOIN MICROSOFT INSIDERS >

Was this information helpful?

What affected your experience?

Thank you for your feedback!

×