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By Mikal Hensarling, ACS/Adaptive Tech Support
JAWS 7.0 (newly arrived on campus) gives one the ability to read Adobe PDF's with this screen-reading software. This is a major step forward in online accessibility and should be especially helpful to our UNT students with vision issues who are taking WebCT courses and also checking out other information and forms on the UNT website. Below is a tutorial - based on documentation by Freedom Scientific - about reading PDF's with JAWS 7.0 and also checking PDFs for disability compliance issues.
Document Presentation Mode
Document Presentation Mode allows you to read tables by row, just as
they are presented on the screen. This mode is useful with HTML pages
and PDFs alike. With this feature, you can change how JAWS structures
HTML pages and other virtual documents (such as PDF documents) in the
virtual buffer. If you select "Simple Layout," each cell in the table is
displayed on a separate line. This is the default layout, and the
behavior should be familiar to users of JAWS 6.20 and earlier. If you
select "Screen Layout," pages are rendered in the virtual buffer in a
way that is more similar to what a sighted user sees on the screen. All
items in a single table row are displayed on the same line, and each
column is separated by a vertical bar. This helps you better understand
the overall table design as well as the relationship between table cells
in each row.
The Accessibility Setup Assistant
When you first start Adobe Reader 7 and JAWS or MAGic are running, an Accessibility Setup Assistant dialog box opens and walks you through some simple steps to optimize Adobe Reader for your adaptive software. If you miss this dialog the first time you start Adobe Reader 7 you can open it from the Help menu.
Accessibility Quick Check for PDF Files
To do a quick check of a document's accessibility, go to the Document menu and choose Accessibility Quick Check. A dialog box opens giving you a summary of how the document is set up.
Accessibility Quick Check Examples
This document appears to contain no text. It may be a scanned image.
This document is not structured so the reading order may not be correct.
Forms Mode in PDF Documents with JAWS
JAWS uses the virtual cursor when reading PDF documents, just as it
does when you are reading Web pages or HTML documents. When you
encounter a PDF form, press the TAB key to move from field to field.
Pressing ENTER while in an edit field turns on Forms Mode and you are
able to type in information as needed. To get out of Forms Mode, press
the NUM PAD PLUS key.
For more extensive documentation read the Guide to Adobe Reader for Users with Disabilities