accessible presentations

Accessible Online Presentations with Adobe Breeze Presentation

Adobe Breeze Training and Adobe Breeze Presentation include a powerful set of tools for authoring accessible online presentations to help instructors communicate content to students, regardless of disability. To build an accessible Adobe Breeze presentation, follow these easy steps.

  1. Set up the Breeze account to be accessible  - See note below.
  2. Build an accessible PowerPoint presentation.
  3. Add an audio transcript to the presentation.
  4. Publish the presentation with pauses between slides.
  5. View the Breeze presentation.

Note: When an account is set up by the Breeze administrator, make sure the account is configured to be accessible. Breeze solutions enable a user choose between publishing content for either Macromedia Flash Player 4 or Macromedia Flash Player 7. While Macromedia Flash Player 4 ensures greater backward compatibility, Macromedia Flash Player 7 provides support for accessibility. Each account must use the same player. A user cannot publish some presentations to be backward compatible and others to be accessible.

Building an Accessible Microsoft PowerPoint Presentation

Since Adobe Breeze presentations are authored in Microsoft PowerPoint, it is important that the PowerPoint presentation itself be accessible. Microsoft PowerPoint presentations often make use of graphics and animation. These elements must be described using text in order for their contents to be accessible to people who are blind using software called a screen reader to read the contents of the presentation to them.

Creating presentations that are accessible to everyone is an important consideration for content developers. PowerPoint presentations that are delivered to an end-users computer can reach a wider audience if accessibility is considered at the development stage. Here are a few steps to consider when creating a PowerPoint presentation.

  1. Add text equivalents to the images used in the presentation.
  2. Limit use of animations and transitions in the PowerPoint presentation.
  3. Ensure the accessibility of animations used.

Adding alt Text to Images in Microsoft PowerPoint

For images or objects (e.g., charts) used in the presentation, add text equivalents (alt text) using the steps below.

  1. Right-click on an image or object, or select an image or object and press Shift+F10.

  2. Select Format Picture or Format Object.
  3. Select the Web tab in the dialog box.

    format object menu
  4. Enter the alt text in the text area box provided. Be sure this text adequately represents the purpose of the image it describes. This text need not be a detailed description of the image but should convey the image’s function on the page.

Limiting Transitions

Accessible presentations should limit transitions to one per slide whenever possible. When a PowerPoint presentation is converted into a Adobe Breeze presentation, overuse of transitions can present difficulties for screen readers. Consider the example of a slide containing bullet points which fly in from the right: as each bullet transitions onto the screen, a screen reader will return to the top of the page and recommence reading the page’s contents from the beginning. This can create a very tedious experience for the screen reader user. While it is acceptable to use such transitions once in a while, it should not be done on every slide. Limiting the use of transitions and animation to one per slide will help to improve the readability of a presentation for screen reader users.

Ensuring the Accessibility of Animations

Animations used in a PowerPoint presentations should be accessible. Ensure that Macromedia Flash animations used in a presentations are accessible by following the recommendations for Macromedia Flash authoring at the Macromedia Accessibility Resource Center.

Carefully consider the use of decorative animations. Constant motion on the screen may cause a screen reader to refresh frequently, making the presentation more difficult to use. Keeping animations to a minimum or eliminating them altogether will increase the accessibility of the content.

Publishing Presentation with Pauses between Slides

When publishing a slide, the second screen of the presentation wizard will ask to select the presentation features. Be sure the option ‘Wait after each slide’ is selected. This will allow screen reader users to listen to the audio presentation and then go back and read through the contents of each slide using a screen reader.

Viewing a Breeze Presentation

Once a PowerPoint presentation has been published to the Adobe Breeze solutions server, a number of keystrokes can be used to help navigate the presentation. These keys allow all users the ability to control the presentation without relying on the use of the mouse.

  • Shift + Page Up – Next Slide
  • Shift + Page Down – Previous Slide
  • Play/Pause
  • Stop
  • Mute
  • Change View

If JAWS 4.5 is being used, turn off the Quick Keys mode by pressing Ins + N in order to use the Breeze solutions keyboard shortcuts.

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