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Accessibility in Microsoft Office 365

Microsoft Office 365 is an online subscription service that provides email, shared calendars, the ability to create and edit documents online, instant messaging, web conferencing, a public website for your organization, and internal team sites.

Office 365 combines Office services including:

  • Ability to access and edit Office files online with Office Web Apps
  • Instant messaging, calls, and meetings with Lync Online
  • Team document sharing and websites with SharePoint Online
  • Email and calendaring with Exchange Online.

Accessibility features in Office Web Apps

[image: Microsoft Office Web Apps logo]

Microsoft Office Web Apps allow you to access and edit files online in your web browser. Office Web Apps include a number of accessibility features including support for screen readers, keyboard accessibility, and high contrast modes.

Support for assistive technology products
The Word Web App and PowerPoint Web App have display modes that make them accessible to screen readers. Learn more. If you use assistive technologies, such as a screen reader or speech recognition software, you will have the best experience in Office Web Apps if the assistive technology that you use supports WAI-ARIA. Office Web Apps provide WAI-ARIA support for assistive technologies (WAI-ARIA stands for Web Accessibility Initiative-Accessible Rich Internet Applications).

Use familiar keyboard shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts from the Office desktop applications such as Ctrl+B, Ctrl+S, and Ctrl+C all work as they do in Office on your desktop. You can also press the Tab key and Shift+Tab to move back and forth between elements on any page.

Read and edit Office files in your browser
Office Web Apps are web versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote that let you read and edit documents right in your browser, and easily share those documents with others. Learn how to read and edit files online with Office Web Apps.

Use accessibility features in your web browser to improve accessibility of Office Web Apps
Office Web Apps run in a web browser so you can use your web browser's accessibility features to improve the readability and accessibility of Office Web Apps. Learn more below.

Work on and share Office documents with SkyDrive
Office Web Apps and SkyDrive let you access files from anywhere and share files with others. Office Web Apps are available for personal use in SkyDrive, for organizations that have installed and configured Office Web Apps on their SharePoint website, and for professionals and organizations that subscribe to select Office 365 services.

Make your Office 365 experience accessible with features in Windows and Internet Explorer

Change how your screen appears
Most Office 365 components are viewed in a web browser so the accessibility features in Windows, Internet Explorer, and other browsers are utilized when you are using Office Web Apps. Learn how to make the computer easier to see to improve your Office 365 experience.

[image: Office Word Web App screen with High Contrast setting]

Office Word Web App screen with High Contrast setting

[image: Zoom feature on the Internet Explorer status bar] Use accessibility features of your browser to improve accessibility of Office Web Apps
Use accessibility features in Internet Explorer 9, Internet Explorer 8, and Internet Explorer 7 to zoom in on a webpage and change the color and fonts used on webpages. If you’re using a different browser, look for information in that browser’s Help about how to customize your display to the size, fonts, and colors you prefer.

Zoom feature on the Internet Explorer status bar

Accessibility in Lync Online for instant messaging, calls, and meetings

Use accessibility features of your browser to improve accessibility of Office Web Apps
[image: Microsoft Lync logo] Lync provides many accessibility features including keyboard navigation, high contrast, keyboard shortcuts, sharing notification, and screen reader support.

Hear incoming messages read aloud
Incoming instant messages and “toast” notifications can be read aloud by screen readers. You’re also notified if your screen is being shared, and will be told the keyboard hotkey combination to access the sharing toolbar.

Use keyboard shortcuts for common tasks
Lync includes several frequently used keyboard shortcuts that make it easier to navigate and move between active windows. For example, Press Ctrl+1 to go to the Contact List tab in the main window, or press Ctrl+F to send a file from a conversation window.

Read more about accessibility features in Lync.

Accessibility in SharePoint Online for team document collaboration and websites

[image: Microsoft SharePoint logo] SharePoint Online includes More Accessible Mode, keyboard shortcuts, easy tab navigation, and help for web managers who want to ensure the webpages created are accessible.

Use your browser’s keyboard shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts in your web browser are designed to work when you are using SharePoint Online. You may still be able to use the Tab key to move between commands in browsers that do not support shortcut key combinations. Find Internet Explorer 9 keyboard shortcuts.

Navigate the page with efficiency
The webpage and navigation elements on a SharePoint website—including the ribbon—follow a logical and intuitive tab order which allows you to navigate a webpage without a mouse.

Enable More Accessible Mode
More Accessible Mode lets you change the way a webpage renders and allows items such as menus and optimized fields to work better with assistive technologies, such as screen readers.

Use Yammer with a screen reader
If you use a screen reader with Yammer, see this article to learn how to navigate in Yammer.

Building an accessible website
Learn how to create an accessible website on SharePoint Online:

Accessibility in Exchange Online for email and calendaring

[image: Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 logo] With Exchange Online, you can listen to email on your phone, manage your calendar, and use familiar keyboard shortcuts when you are managing email and your calendar online.

Use keyboard shortcuts
In addition to the shortcuts you use to navigate in your browser, you can also use the Tab key to switch the cursor between elements on your screen, and Alt + key combinations to switch between menus.

Use Outlook Web App email with a screen reader
If you use a screen reader, this article can help you make the change to online. It has information about how to navigate in Outlook Web App, and about how the Outlook Web App page is structured.

Listen to your email over the phone
You can manage your email inbox when using an analog, digital, or mobile telephone.

You can use touch-tone or voice commands on your phone to hear email messages read aloud, listen to voice messages, interact with your Outlook calendar, and access your personal contacts.

Learn more about accessibility in Microsoft Exchange Online.

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[image: Microsoft Office 365 logo]

More Information

Watch the video What is Office 365? to learn more about how Office 365 puts services together.

Learn more about accessibility features in:

School for the Blind Bridges Distances with Microsoft Lync

Microsoft Lync is helping students at the Washington State School for the Blind learn algebra and software programming remotely.

"It is basically like being in a real classroom. Lync’s clarity and reliability has improved the teaching experience a lot."

- Robin Lowell, teacher at Washington State School for the Blind

© 2014 Microsoft 
[image: Microsoft]