Creator: Accessible Libraries
Date Updated: October 13, 2022
The last webinar in the Summer Short series is about font attributes and how to format your text accessibly in your documents.
All the Accessible Libraries Summer Short webinars recordings are available:
What are Font Attributes?
Font attributes are added to the font or text of your document to change or style it. Font attributes include:
- Font size (e.g, 14-point)
- Font colour (e.g., black)
- Font type (e.g., Arial)
- Line spacing (e.g., single or double)
- And more…
Font attributes can make your document inaccessible, so you need to consider carefully how and where you apply them. For example, small font, tight line/word/letter spacing, and poor colour contrast between the text and background can make a document nearly impossible to read.
How to ensure your font attributes are accessible?
Here is how you can ensure your font attributes are accessible:
- Use a larger font size when possible.
- Don’t use colour alone to convey meaning in your text.
- Consider how your text contrasts with the background of your document. Black text on white is accessible, but light grey text on a white background has low contrast and is difficult to read.
- We recommend using a sans serif font like Arial or Verdana as they are easier to read.
- Limit or avoid the use of all caps.
How do you add font attributes to your document?
When possible, use the Styles pane to add font attributes to the text in your document, not the direct formatting toolbar. For example, to bold text use the “Strong” tag and to italicize the text use “Emphasis.”
Formatting text from the “Styles” pane will semantically tag the text for screen readers, so they recognize and announce that the text is “strong” or “emphasized.”