How to Guides
The summary information on this page (basics by categories, prioritizing and general Purchase College digital accessibility assumptions) is supported by specific topical information in each subsection (the menu on the left).
The basic guidelines below are summarized from standards listed in the Purchase College Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Policy and Resolution Agreement.
Always check your work with built accessibility checkers
Once you are done making your document accessible, check it with respective programs accessibility checker
- PDF: Using the Acrobat X Pro Accessibility Checker
- Microsoft Office: Use the Accessibility Checker on your Windows desktop to find accessibility issues
- Microsoft Word: Make your Word documents accessible
- Powerpoint: Make your PowerPoint presentations accessible
- Websites: Check your WebPage for accessibility with the WAVE Web Accessibility Tool
- Videos: Making Accessible Videos
- Microsoft Office: Rules for the Accessibility Checker
- Multimedia: W3C Multimedia Accessibility FAQ
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Section 508 Accessibility Checklists
Basics by categories
Straight text* documents created at Purchase College should be text-based and have:
- sequential heading styles,
- lists that are styles and
- descriptive links.
Straight text* documents that are acquired from other sources should be, at a minimum:
- text-based with
- heading styles provided by the Purchase College Library scanning and linking process.
- Recommendation for images: Documents, even acquired ones, that are used frequently or on publically-facing websites should be evaluated and alternative text descriptions provided for images with significance or meaning. This is at the professor’s discretion for course materials.
*Straight text excludes STEM topics and documents with extensive images
- Instructional environments and contents should be accessible and be used in the best accessible manner.
Media (Request captioning at rev.com - opens new tab)
- Videos should be open-captioned.
- Audio recordings should be transcribed.
- Make a request for programming and developers in the Campus Technology Services (CTS) Work Order Tracking System (WOT)
- Software, hardware and electronic and information technology Request review (opens new tab)
- SUNY Policy notes software/hardware - (opens in a new tab) should be accessible and be used in the best accessible manner.
- Only accessible electronic and information technology should be purchased (opens new tab).
Priority is assigned to:
- items used for academic purposes or public-facing websites
- items that will be used by many
- items that will be used more than once
- Web pages are natively, and more easily made, accessible than other content options.
- Many common documents are more flexible and accessible in their original programs.
- Word processing documents are usually more accessible than the same documents saved as PDFs
- PowerPoint files are better than PowerPoint saved as PDFs
- Forms follow the same principles: better as web forms, then Word forms and, if absolutely necessary, as fillable PDF forms.