Everyone learns differently. We process information at our own pace, use different devices, and interact with content in ways that suit our needs. That’s why we want to help you create immersive 360° experiences that are accessible to all learners.
Below is a list of currently available accessibility enhancements for 360° images, and there’s more work underway, such as screen reader support and keyboard navigation. Stay tuned!
Alt text helps learners understand the value of media files and is especially important for people who use screen readers and other assistive technologies.
- Select the image or video in a marker or hotspot label.
- Go to the Media tab on the ribbon, click Alt Text, and enter descriptive text in the dialog that appears, as shown below. (The short description defaults to the name of the media file and is customizable.)
- Click OK.
Short descriptions (alt text) are essential for screen reader users and announced when learners tab to images and videos. (You can also manage short descriptions in the media library.)
Long descriptions are optional and announced when learners interact with the image or video. Reserve long descriptions for complex images (e.g., graphs, maps, tables, and charts) when brief alt text isn’t enough to convey information. Leave this field blank for simple, informative images and videos.
Note: Once you add alt text or a long description for an asset, it remains the same whenever you use that same asset in any 360° interaction in the same course.
Keep these tips in mind to write effective alt text.
- Make alt text meaningful. Describe the purpose of the media. The same content could have different purposes in different contexts, so be sure to use alt text to tell learners why it’s there.
The following example of an informative image could be described by alt text as Smartphone displaying a skyscraper. It's accurate and brief. But what if you're using the same image to describe the features of a smartphone? In that context, the skyscraper is irrelevant. You’d focus on the smartphone itself since that’s its purpose—for example, Front of smartphone with 5” screen, camera, and home button.
- Be concise. Aim for 150 characters or fewer.
- Exclude “image of” or “video of.” Screen readers announce “graphic” or “video” by default.