Acrobat DC Action Wizards – Make Accessible

In Adobe Acrobat DC, the easiest way to double check that your PDF is accessible is to use the Make Accessible Action Wizard. To start the wizard:

  1. Go to the Tools menu.
  2. Scroll to the bottom and Select Action Wizard.

Adobe Acrobat DC Action Wizard icon

3. Select Make Accessible from the Actions list.

This will open the Make Accessible Wizard. Click on Start and the Wizard will walk you through making your PDF accessible in three main steps.

Acrobat DC Make Accessible Wizard

1. Prepare

Add Document Description

Using the dialog box, add a Title, and, if applicable, add a Subject, Author and/or Keywords. To make adjustments to the existing information, uncheck the Leave As Is box.

Acrobat DC Optimize Scanned Documents Wizard

Set Open Options

This step will happen automatically.

Recognize Text using OCR

OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition. Using the dialog box, choose the Primary OCR Language and click OK.

acrobatdcrecognizetext

Detect Form Fields

If your document is not a form, skip this step.

Acrobat DC dialog box: Is this document intended to be used as a fillable form? If so, choose yes to detect form fields.

Set Tab Order Properly

This step will happen automatically.

2. Set Language & Tags

Set Reading Language

Using the dialog box, set the language appropriately and click OK.

acrobatdcsetlanguage

Add Tags to Document

This step will happen automatically.

Set Alternative Text

This step will walk you through adding alt text for meaningful images and/or marking decorative images accordingly. Click OK when the dialog box appears.

acrobatdcalttext

If you’ve already set all of your alt text in Word, you’ll be able to skip this step. Acrobat will let you know there are no figures with missing alt text. You may click OK.

Acrobat DC dialog box: There are no figures with missing alternate text.

However, if you haven’t set all of your alt text, Acrobat will give you the opportunity to add it. The image should be highlighted. You may either add Alternative text or mark the image as a Decorative figure. Use the forward arrow button to go to the next image, if applicable. If you accidentally skip an image, you may go back by clicking on the back arrow. Once you have finished, click Save & Close.

Acrobat DC Set Alternate Text dialog box

3. Run Accessibility Check

Run Accessibility Full Check

When you’re ready to run the check, all of your previous categories should have a checkmark.

Acrobat DC Make Accessible Action Wizard with checkmarks indicating completed steps for sections 1 & 2: Prepare and Set Language & Tags

The default checked options should be fine. Choose Start Checking.

Acrobat DC Accessibility Checker Options dialog box

Once the full check has run, you’ll receive the Accessibility Checker report on the left side of your screen:

Acrobat DC Accessibility Checker report sample

If you expand the items with issues in the report, you’ll find more details.  If you right click on an item, you can choose the Explain option to give you some assistance.

acrobatdccheckerassistance

This will open a web browser with Adobe Help’s website.

If there is an actual error, such as missing alt text, a Fix option will also appear in the right click menu. Clicking on the Fix option will prompt you to make the appropriate adjustment.

acrobatdccheckerfixoption

If you’ve followed all of the best practices for accessibility in your original Word document, your report may not note any errors. The only issues you may have are ones that require a manual check, such as logical reading order and/or color contrast.

Once you’ve finished, you may close the Make Accessible Wizard and save your PDF.

The Accessibility Full Check may also be accessed via the Accessibility panel of the Tools pane. If you have a more complicated PDF or one that didn’t originate as an accessible Word document, you may need to tackle accessibility a bit differently. The following steps are similar to the Wizard, but take a more manual approach.

For more information about the Accessibility Checker, refer to Adobe’s Guide: http://www.adobe.com/accessibility/products/acrobat/using-acrobat-pro-accessibility-checker.html

If you want some hands-on practice, sign up for Acrobat DC workshops this month:

  • Workspace Basics (Professional Development)
  • Wizards & Exports (Management Boot Camp)
  • Basic Forms (Management Boot Camp)

Check out CAPE’s TeamUp Calendar for descriptions, dates and times!

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