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Thread: How to make project progress table in Word document accessible?

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From: Jim Byrne Accessible Web Design
Date: Tue, Sep 13 2022 3:55AM
Subject: How to make project progress table in Word document accessible?
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Hi,

I’ve have been asked to look at a Word document that contains a table showing the progress of construction project.

There are dates across the top and coloured bars running horizontally along the table rows - showing progress. The rows represent particular aspects of the construction.

Does anyone have any advice for making this table accessible to screen readers users?

Some of the table cells contain merged sub-cells to give fine-tuned length to the bars. I looks like each cell is sub-divided into 4 sub-cells.

It’s a complex table. Is the answer that there is no way to make this table accessible? I.e. they should write an alternative text description of what is presented in the table?

Thanks,
Jim

From: Jim Homme
Date: Thu, Sep 15 2022 6:35AM
Subject: Re: How to make project progress table in Word documentaccessible?
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Hi,
Without understanding what the tables convey, if you are forced into keeping MS Word format, simple tables are the best way to make this content accessible. Screen readers and Word play together badly in Word with complex tables. If you are able to make HTML documents, I feel this is the best way to go, because you can have control over how screen readers handle complex tables. PDF is another way to go, but you will spend a lot of time manually tagging table relationships.

As for the graphical indications, you will need alt text to convey what the visuals mean.

Thanks.

Jim H

=========Jim Homme
Senior Digital Accessibility Consultant
Bender Consulting Services
412-787-8567
https://www.benderconsult.com/
Support the dreams of independence through employment for students with disabilities with your Amazon purchases.
https://smile.amazon.com/ch/83-0988251

-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of Jim Byrne Accessible Web Design
Sent: Tuesday, September 13, 2022 5:56 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Subject: [WebAIM] How to make project progress table in Word document accessible?

Hi,

I’ve have been asked to look at a Word document that contains a table showing the progress of construction project.

There are dates across the top and coloured bars running horizontally along the table rows - showing progress. The rows represent particular aspects of the construction.

Does anyone have any advice for making this table accessible to screen readers users?

Some of the table cells contain merged sub-cells to give fine-tuned length to the bars. I looks like each cell is sub-divided into 4 sub-cells.

It’s a complex table. Is the answer that there is no way to make this table accessible? I.e. they should write an alternative text description of what is presented in the table?

Thanks,
Jim

From: Laura Roberts
Date: Thu, Sep 15 2022 3:07PM
Subject: Re: How to make project progress table in Word document accessible?
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It sounds like the table creator basically merged a bar chart plus multiple
tables into one table. You can try to convince them to create a separate
bar chart and simple tables, but I've often found that clients can be
stubborn about this. (Again, it's very hard to give advice without seeing
it.)

As a last resort, you can write alt text for the entire table. Although
that's a FAR from ideal user experience, it's better than nothing.

If the document was a pdf, it would be easier to solve, but you would need
someone experienced in pdf remediation.


On Thu, Sep 15, 2022, 8:36 AM Jim Homme < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:

> Hi,
> Without understanding what the tables convey, if you are forced into
> keeping MS Word format, simple tables are the best way to make this content
> accessible. Screen readers and Word play together badly in Word with
> complex tables. If you are able to make HTML documents, I feel this is the
> best way to go, because you can have control over how screen readers handle
> complex tables. PDF is another way to go, but you will spend a lot of time
> manually tagging table relationships.
>
> As for the graphical indications, you will need alt text to convey what
> the visuals mean.
>
> Thanks.
>
> Jim H
>
> =========> Jim Homme
> Senior Digital Accessibility Consultant
> Bender Consulting Services
> 412-787-8567
> https://www.benderconsult.com/
> Support the dreams of independence through employment for students with
> disabilities with your Amazon purchases.
> https://smile.amazon.com/ch/83-0988251
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of
> Jim Byrne Accessible Web Design
> Sent: Tuesday, September 13, 2022 5:56 AM
> To: WebAIM Discussion List < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
> Subject: [WebAIM] How to make project progress table in Word document
> accessible?
>
> Hi,
>
> I’ve have been asked to look at a Word document that contains a table
> showing the progress of construction project.
>
> There are dates across the top and coloured bars running horizontally
> along the table rows - showing progress. The rows represent particular
> aspects of the construction.
>
> Does anyone have any advice for making this table accessible to screen
> readers users?
>
> Some of the table cells contain merged sub-cells to give fine-tuned length
> to the bars. I looks like each cell is sub-divided into 4 sub-cells.
>
> It’s a complex table. Is the answer that there is no way to make this
> table accessible? I.e. they should write an alternative text description of
> what is presented in the table?
>
> Thanks,
> Jim
>
>
>
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> > > > > >