How to Create Accessible PDF Documents – New Guidelines Released

Nowadays, universal and unrestricted access to documents has become commonplace. In particular, PDF documents can be created quickly and easily, they look the same everywhere and can be read by any device. Whether for the distribution of printed material or forms: PDF documents are used extensively everywhere to provide various contents.

Not everyone can benefit from this natural access. Especially people with disabilities are often confronted with inaccessible PDF documents. An example: without appropriate precautions, a blind person cannot read a scanned copy, even if it has been converted into PDF format.

With the Act on Equal Opportunities for People with Disabilities and the BITV 2.0, respectively, public bodies are also legally obliged to make digital offerings accessible.

For this purpose, information material has been developed at the Chair of Human-Computer Interaction at TU Dresden, which are intended to provide support in the creation of accessible documents. The material has been developed as part of an inclusion funded project.

We offer detailed instructions (as brochures) as well as in short form (as flyers) in German and English language. There are instructions and guidelines for the following applications:

  • Microsoft Word (Download: de / en)
  • Microsoft PowerPoint (Download: de / en)
  • Adobe InDesign (Download: de / en)
  • Adobe Acrobat DC
  • axesPDF QuickFix
  • PAC – PDF Accessibility Checker
  • PAVE – online tool to check PDF files for accessibility

With the brochures and flyers’ brief instructions that we have developed, we would like to give you guidance on how to create your documents in such a way that they are accessible to more people. In addition, it should make your work more effective and efficient in the long term.