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How to Make Accessible InDesign and PDF Documents

November 24, 2017 @ 9:00 am - 3:30 pm EST


Self-Paced Learning

This hands-on training course is designed to address ‘why’ and ‘how to’ create an Accessible PDF document using Adobe InDesign and Adobe Acrobat Professional.

Target Audience

This one-day workshop is for Graphic Designers, Production Artist, Marketing personnel who use Adobe InDesign to create PDF documents for website content. Intermediate skill level using Adobe InDesign and Acrobat is suggested.

“Accessibility Services Canada’s workshop “Adobe Indesign Accessible PDFs” was fantastic. The facilitator’s training style was very enjoyable, giving practical exercises and useful tricks that will help us achieve accessibility on a variety of documents. I will strongly recommend this workshop to graphic designers and other creative minds who are searching for better ways to make accessible documents and visual communications.”         Monika Villoza, Spaenaur

Overview of content

  • How best to design and format documents for accessibility
  • How to save time and energy on repetitive tasks in InDesign
  • What print design behaviours need to be changed- the do’s and don’ts of NEW accessible design
  • Understanding document structure and format integrity and why it is now so important
  • Understanding the process and complexities involved when producing a document for accessibility
  • Reviewing important layout and design principles and practices that affect accessible PDFs
  • How to ensure compliance with the AODA

Using Adobe InDesign

  • Creating a custom accessibility workspace
  • Proper text layout and formatting for tagged text
  • Overview of paragraph and character styles
  • Mapping export tags to text
  • Comparing InDesign export options vs Adobe PDF presets
  • Dealing with graphic elements and complicated diagrams
  • Adding Alternate text to images and diagrams
  • Anchoring content within the text frames
  • Overview of table construction
  • Applying table header tag settings
  • Preparing Master Page items for conversion to PDF
  • Adding a Table Summary
  • Review of ordered and unordered lists
  • Creating accessible Bookmarks and Hyperlinks
  • Creating a Table of Contents
  • Adding required Metadata within InDesign
  • Review and application of Export Option Panel settings
  • Advantages of using Paragraph Rules or Paragraph Shading
  • Controlling tag and reading order
  • Applying a language setting within InDesign

Using Adobe Acrobat

  • Using the Tags, Order and Bookmarks panels in Adobe Acrobat
  • Adding metadata and editing tags in Acrobat
  • Manually and automatically creating Bookmarks in Acrobat
  • Creating Automated Bookmarks from Document Structure in Acrobat
  • Setting the document Language and preferences in Acrobat
  • Testing PDF files for accessibility issues using a PDF checker

NOTE: These are not complete lists of topics – other areas will be discussed, as generated by participants.

Laptop/software requirements

Each student must bring a Windows or MAC laptop with the following:

  • Adobe Acrobat 11 or DC Professional (NOT the Acrobat Reader)
  • Adobe InDesign CS6 or CC 2017
  • A USB key will be used to transfer class files to laptops – ensure this can be done on your laptop.
  • Computer Mouse
  • Power cord

Intermediate knowledge and experience using Adobe InDesign CS6 or higher, and Adobe Acrobat DC is recommended.


  • High quality instruction by an InDesign Accessibility Specialist
  • Small class size (maximum 10 participants)
  • A Step-by-Step Reference Guide
  • Complimentary coffee and tea
  • A chance to network with other professionals
  • Official recognition for your participation (that you can share on LinkedIn, Facebook or your resume)

Although using the techniques in this course should help assist in creating accessible PDF documents, it does not guarantee accessibility to any specific disability group. It is recommended that you test the documents you create with end users who have disabilities as well as accessibility assisting devices to determine complete accessibility.


Accommodations available upon request. 

Certificate of Completion

After viewing this webinar you will be awarded a personalized Certificate of Completion which can be shared on LinkedIn, Twitter,  and Facebook, downloaded as a PDF or shared via URL.

Webinar Permissions

Your purchase gives one person access to view this webinar for 7 days from the date of purchase. Access is non-transferable and log in details may not be shared with others. No extensions will be given beyond 7 days.

Your purchase gives one person access to view this webinar for 30 days from the date of purchase. Access to this webinar recording cannot be shared with other people. No extensions will be given beyond 30 days.

15% Discount

Order 3 or more tickets to view this webinar and get 15% off your order. The applied discount will appear in the Cart.


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