PDFs from Word

The best way to create an accessible PDF is to create a fully accessible Word document and "Save As" a PDF. The "Save As" function carries over the accessible features of your document, such as heading structure, alternate text for images, and markup that explicitly identifies lists, tables, document language, and other content that is important for accessibility.

Note: Do not Print to PDF. This method of creating a PDF does not preserve the document's accessibility features.

Word 2013 and Word 2010 (Windows)

  • Go to File > "Save As…" and select PDF from the choices provided.
  • Select Options and ensure that "Document structure tags for accessibility" is checked.

Word 2007 and Word 2003 (Windows)

  • Exporting to an accessible PDF in Word 2007 and 2003 requires a plug-in such as Adobe PDFMaker, included with Adobe Acrobat Pro. With this plug-in installed, use the Adobe toolbar or the Adobe menu item to Save As PDF.

Word for Mac

As of Word 2011, it is not yet possible to export to accessible PDF from a Mac. Please look at some tips for creating an accessible PDF from a Mac from Portland Community College.