Canvas Accessibility – Instructional Guide

This instructional guide features specific detailed directions on how to apply accessibility to a canvas page.

Headings

To apply Headings within Canvas LMS, follow these steps:

Select Edit within the Canvas Page

Select the edit button in the top right of the page.
Select Edit Button in top right corner of the page

Select the text you would like to make a heading and change the heading style in the Rich Text Editor

Select text you would like to make as a heading, and change the dropdown style heading selection.
Select text you would like to make a heading, and use the rich content editor to change the style to the appropriate heading

Lists

To apply lists, follow these steps:

Ensure your in edit mode

Select the edit button in the top right of the page.
Select Edit Button in top right corner of the page

Select the text you would like made into a list

Remember bulleted lists should be used for items where the order is not important. Numbered lists should be used when order of events should be considered.

Select the appropriate list from the Rich Content Editor

Selecting content to be a list, and then selecting list.
Select list items, and select type of list button

Links

To add accessible Links to a Canvas page, follow these steps:

Ensure your in edit mode

Select the edit button in the top right of the page.
Select Edit Button in top right corner of the page

Select the text you would like to make a hyperlink

Ensure the link text select avoids “click here” and other vague terms. Use clear and concise links. Be as descriptive as possible!

Select the Link to URL button

Ensure the link text select avoids "click here" and other vague terms. Use clear and concise links.
Select text, and then the Insert Link URL button

Tables

Tables are treated specially by screen readers and are reliant on the structure to determine how the information is read aloud. It is required to mark table cells as headers when used. This can be done directly from Canvas. To ensure a table has headers, follow these steps:

Ensure you’re in edit mode

Select the edit button in the top right of the page.
Select Edit Button in top right corner of the page

Select the cell you want to make a header

Select Table > Cell > Cell Properties

Select header Cell, then select table button, then cell, then cell properties.
Select header Cell, then select table button, then cell, then cell properties.

Select General Tab, Cell Type, and Change to the Header cell

Select General Tab, Cell Type, and Change to Header cell
Select General Tab, Cell Type, and Change to Header cell

Color Contrast

Color contrast simply requires there to be enough difference between fore- and background to make out the text, or other important information. The WCAG accessibility standard requires at least a 3.0:1 contrast ratio for text above 18 point font (14 bold) and 4.5:1 contrast at or below 18 point font (14 point bold). This makes web text easier to read for students with low vision. It also helps make the text more obvious for students who are color-blind.

To test contrast: I recommend downloading a color contrast tool.

Visual Elements

Simply changing the color or size of the font is not communicated through a document reader to a student using assistive technology. Use bold elements, headings, and italics to pull attention to the material. Uppercase passages should always be avoided because screen readers can assume uppercase letters are an acronym and read them a letter at a time. 

Alternate Text

To add alternate text to an image, follow these steps:

Ensure you’re in edit mode

Select the edit button in the top right of the page.
Select Edit Button in top right corner of the page

Select Image, and then select Embed Image button

Select Image, and then select Embed Image button
Select Image, and then select Embed Image button

Add Alt text and Select Update

Add Alt text and Select Update
Add Alt text and Select Update

If you would like personalized support, feel free to purchase a 30-minute consultation. You can find all of my services on the shop page.

Would you prefer the Video Walkthrough?

Video Walkthrough
Canvas Accessibility – Video Walkthrough
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