[Athen] Screen Reader Verbosity

Susan Kelmer Susan.Kelmer at colorado.edu
Fri Feb 1 10:25:46 PST 2019

I agree with Debee. This is a rudimentary skill screen reader users should already have, and if they don’t, they need to learn it. The formatting the instructor is using is appropriate, and to ask them to make further changes is unreasonable. A strong screenreader user won’t have any problem with how it is written.

Susan Kelmer
Alternate Format Production Program Manager
Disability Services
University of Colorado Boulder

From: athen-list <athen-list-bounces at mailman12.u.washington.edu> On Behalf Of Deborah Armstrong
Sent: Friday, February 1, 2019 11:14 AM
To: 'Access Technology Higher Education Network' <athen-list at u.washington.edu>
Subject: Re: [Athen] Screen Reader Verbosity

This might be an unpopular view, but I think the users, if they are taking college-level courses, need to learn to configure their screen reader appropriately. In a job situation you will need to adjust the level of punctuation and also how numbers are read.

I’ve seen accessible websites that dispensed with tables because screen reader users had trouble with them. Modern screen readers cope with properly formatted HTML tables just fine, so removing tables only prevents the user from learning how to navigate them.

In my opinion, if you make it too easy they don’t get to learn skills which help them grow proficient with the screen reader.


From: athen-list <athen-list-bounces at mailman12.u.washington.edu<mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman12.u.washington.edu>> On Behalf Of Michael Nakai
Sent: Friday, February 01, 2019 9:15 AM
To: athen-list at u.washington.edu<mailto:athen-list at u.washington.edu>
Subject: [Athen] Screen Reader Verbosity


I have a question to pose to anyone who can help.

While using Canvas to post syllabuses, our instructors often post grading scales similar to the form below:

A: 100%-93%
A-: 92.9%-90%
B+: 89.9%-87%
...and so forth

It has been pointed out that various screen readers aren't verbose enough to pronounce, "A minus" when it encounters that hyphen. Or well versed enough to pronounce the numbers as a range like, "one hundred percent to ninety-three percent".

Without having to require the user to change the configuration of their reader to be more verbose, is there something that we can do within our formatting that can help with this?

Michael Nakai
Adaptive Technology

Weber State University Disability Services
3885 West Campus Drive Dept 1129
Ogden, Utah 84408-1129
(801) 626-6413
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