OCR, Part 4: An Introduction to Document Accessibility

March 31, 2022

This webinar was not recorded.

Access for People with Disabilities to Higher Education Programs and Resources – A Four-Part Series

Attorneys from OCR’s National Web Accessibility Team will discuss the types of allegations they handle under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, as well as how they identify accessibility barriers for people with disabilities, develop resolution strategies, and work with vendors. This is your opportunity to hear directly from OCR. Learn how they view and resolve hundreds of higher education technology accessibility allegations each year. Get tips on how to stay in compliance and learn promising practices.


David Kutch is an attorney with OCR. He joined OCR after working in the Educational Opportunities Section of the Civil Rights Division at the U.S. Department of Justice. Prior to entering the government, David’s primary focus was labor and employment law and policy.


PDF and Word file documents remain one of the most common ways that colleges and universities convey important information about their programs and activities to students, faculty, staff, and their larger communities. The Americans with Disabilities Act requires that this information be communicated to people with disabilities as effectively as it is communicated to others. Please join OCR as we discuss frequently encountered accessibility problems with PDF and Word documents and share some tips and best practices on creating accessible documents.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this session, learners will have a better understanding of:

  • How common digital access barriers manifest themselves in documents, and simple techniques for creating PDF and Word documents without those barriers.
  • The concepts underlying more advanced techniques, including: creating accessible data tables; laying out content in a visually appealing way while maximizing accessibility for all using styles, lists, paragraph settings, and other tools; and improving document navigability.
  • How to check the accessibility of PDF and Word documents, including some quick ways to address simple barriers to access.