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Impact of Digital Document Accessibility

taught by: Ian Smith

Session Summary

This course will cover PDF accessibility compliance and will provide an overview of how non-compliant documents “appear” to end-users, the benefits of an accessible document, and the fundamentals required to create an accessible PDF file.


The intent of this session is to help you understand the challenges end-users encounter when trying to consume non-compliant PDF files. As the Director of Accessibility Platforms and Solutions at codemantra US, LLC., an experienced document platform and solutions company, I have spent many years understanding how accessible documents benefit all end-users.

We will cover three main topics in this session:

  • An understanding of how difficult it is for end-users to consume non-compliant PDF documents due to the lack of structure and reading order.

There are many visual cues that sighted users have inherently learned to utilize over the years when reading a document that provide context and understanding about various parts of a document. I will illustrate some of these and help you understand how these allow us to perceive structure and logical reading order.

  • the impact a fully compliant document has to users of assistive technologies.

As a continuation of the first topic, this portion will help you understand how users of assistive technologies can have the same experience as sighted users when the digital document is fully compliant

  • the fundamental areas that are required to create fully compliant digital documents.

Now that we have a basic understanding of what an accessible document is, we will walk through the main areas that are required to create these accessible PDF files. I will be using a platform solution from codemantra that combines machine learning and human intelligence to provide the most efficient path to document accessibility compliance.

Practical Skills

  • A basic understanding of the benefits that accessible documents provide
  • An introduction to document structure and logical reading order
  • Fundamentals required to create a fully compliant PDF file

Presentation Materials