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Re: Accessible Excel files -- two questions


From: JP Jamous
Date: Mar 30, 2017 4:32PM


Not sure if you are targeting multiple screen readers or just JAWS. With JAWS you can use Insert + CTRL + Alt + c for columns or r for rows. JAWS will create a JSI file and use the column your cursor was in as the row header and the row you are in as the column header. This way, you can avoid identifying headers and getting the icons. However, this is only a JAWS feature. I don't think NVDA has such one for Excel.

-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Dona Patrick
Sent: Thursday, March 30, 2017 3:51 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List < <EMAIL REMOVED> >
Subject: [WebAIM] Accessible Excel files -- two questions

I am supposed to make two Excel files accessible and explain to the client what they need to do to make this easier. These files are going to be used as templates so must remain in Excel format. I know the basics, but have conflicting answers for a question and I have another question.

The files have several tables. The first tab has a table that can be given alt text and has header cells set (this table has headers). The other tables cannot be given alt text and header cells cannot be designated. My assumption is (and I am not at all comfortable with Excel as it is) that the tables that cannot be given alt text and the header cells cannot be designated are not true tables, but the first table is. I think that what I need to suggest is that they highlight the content that is a table, select the checkbox that says "my table has headers" and that will make it a true table.

Am I anywhere near correct about this? Someone I asked at work suggested that tables in an Excel spreadsheet are always tables.

My second question is less accessibility related and more just an Excel question...

When I do make the tables true tables and say the tables have headers (if that is the right thing to do) the tables end up with a header row with icons for sorting. Is there any way to get rid of those icons?

I hope I was clear.

Thank you for any help and let me know if I can be more clear.