PowerPoint accessibility for MAC


Common core

  • Accessible writing
  • Accessible Word to PDF
  • Checking and correcting PDF accessibility

External links

to download


A. Creating an accessible PowerPoint document
Writing accessible text

Accessibility must be considered from the creation of your message. The accessible writing workshop addresses the basics of accessibility to help you design an accessible message.

Document properties


Metadata includes information on the document such as:

  • Title
  • Author
  • Subject
  • Document keywords
  • The language of the document

These properties are retained when the document is published in another format.

Defining the metadata
  1. In the File tab select Properties.

    File properties tab
  2. Fill out the Title and other properties in the the Summary tab then click OK.
Properties dialog box
Defining the primary language of a document
  1. Under the Tools tab select Language.

    Language tab
  2. In the Language dialog box, Select your document language from the list and choose your default language.
  3. Click OK.

Language dialog box


Add styles to titles
  1. Under Home (1), in Slides (2), Click Layout (3).
  2. Click Reset Layout to Default Settings (4).
  3. Type a unique title in the field.
Formating Paragraphs
  1. Select the text you wish to format.
  2. Under the Format tab (1), choose Paragraph (2).
  3. Determine the alignment, justification, line spacing, and spacing between paragraphs.
Create bulleted or numbered lists and sub-lists

In the  Powerpoint Ribbon under the Home tab

  1. Go to the Paragraph group (1).
  2. Choose Bullets icon for lists without hierarchy (2).
  3. Choose the Numbering icon for ordered lists (3).
  4. Use the automatic creation as you type by pressing the ENTER key to add the following to the list.
  5. Complete the list by hitting BACKSPACE twice to delete the last bullet and the last number in the list.

Create sub-lists

A. Use the TAB key or the TAB icons (A) button.
B. Create list styles with one of the dialogue boxes (B) Example of a dialog box to define a new list style.
C. Use the sequence SHIFT + TAB to return to the level above.  


Create a SmartArt graphic
  1. On the SmartArt tab (1).
  2. Go to the Insert SmartArt Graphic group (2).
  3. Select the desired layout (3 & 4).
  4. Click OK.
Editing a SmartArt graphic
  1. Click on the SmartArt graphic you wish to edit,
  2. Click (1) on the left-top side of the SmartArt graphic;
  3. Click (2) to add or delete a shape;
  4. Click (3) to move a shape in varions directions.

Go to Create a SmartArt graphic  to learn more about creating graphics.

Adding alternate text to SmartArt
  1. Select the graphic that needs to be described
  2. Right-click on it.
  3. Select Format Picture (1).

In the dialog box:

  1. Select the Alt Text tab (2).
  2. Write your title in the Title box (3).
  3. Write your description in the Description box (4).
  4. Click OK (5).


Mathematics Formulas
  1. Click the place where the mathematical formula should be written.
  2. On the Document Elements tab (1), click the dialog box launcher under the Equation icon (2).
  3. A new ribbon for writing mathematical formulas will appear (see example below).
  4. Type an equation in the newly created object.
  5. Insert a caption following the same steps as those described in the previous section with the only difference being that the label type is Equation.


Create a data table
  1. Go to Tables section of the menu (1),
  2. Under Table Options select New (2),
  3. Select the number of rows and columns (3),
  4. Click OK.
Adding alternate text to a table
  1. Select the table that needs to be described
  2. Right-click on it
  3. Select Format Table…

In the dialog box:

  1. Select the Alt Text tab (1).
  2. Write your title in the Title box (2).
  3. Write your description in the Description box (3).
  4. Click OK (4).
Give titles to columns and rows
  1. Select your table to see the tab Table Tab (1).
  2. Under Table Options (2).
  3. Click on header rows (3).
Edit table cells
  1. Select your table cell,
  2. Next to Tables, click on the Table Layout tab (1),
  3. Click on Margins (2), then Custom margins (3),
  4. In the Text Box (4),
  5. Define your cells (5),
  6. Click OK.


Insert Hyperlink or a linked document
  1. Under the Insert tab (1), click on the Hyperlink function (2), which provides access to the Insert Hyperlink dialogue box.
  2. In the Link to section (3), write the website URL, an existing file source or an E-mail Address.
  3. In the Display section (4), insert the text that you want to display.
  4. Make sure that the ScreenTip (or ToolTip) is left empty.
  5. Click the OK button (5).
Audio and video closed captioning

Save a PowerPoint document

Save your PPT document in an accessible format
  • Important!: Save your PPT presentations in .pptx to check the accessibility of your PPT presentation.

Reading order

Ensure that the reading order of each slide is logical
  1. Under the Arrange (1) tab, click Reorder Objects (2).
  2. The Reorder Tool lists the objects on the slide. Item no.1 in the panel is read last.
  3. Correct any out of order items using the Re-order arrows on the bottom of the pane.
B.Tools and Resources

To learn more about creating Accessible PPT documents

Web accessibility compliance coordinator
613-562-5800 (7452)
  • Accessibility help clinics
  • Needs assessments
  • Made-to-measure tools
  • Referrals
  • Other support
Computing and Communications Service
uOttawa computing assistance request form
Extension 6555
Accessibility training: Introduction
How to create an accessible campaign
How to interact with accessibility in mind
How to create accessible web content
Find an expert

Marie-Claude Gagnon, Web Accessibility Compliance Coordinator

613-562-5800 extension 7452

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