Creating accessible learning in Elucidat

It is very important to us that courses created using Elucidat are accessible to as many people as possible.

With that in mind, we have made it possible for you to make learning with the Elucidat tool that fully satisfies Section 508 in the US, and the Equality Act in the UK.

Elucidat is made from good, semantic, validatable HTML (HyperText Markup Language) that is easily understood by whichever assistive technologies you and your learners choose to use. We offer a huge step forward from the old Flash based tools and are an accessibility leader amongst the new HTML5 tools.

Some of the headline accessibility features include:

  • Full support for JAWS screen reader and OS X Voiceover
  • Full support for keyboard navigation
  • Visible highlighting to show learners using keyboard navigation where they are
  • Well crafted semantic HTML5 to help learners understand the structure of all pages
  • Forms and interactions designed to be easy to use by screen readers

You can find a full list of our currently accessible page types and elements here.

We continually improve our accessibility support, and, depending on your service level, are able to work with you to audit specific courses and resolve any issues found in a timely manner. We are also passionate about making it better and better so if you have any suggestions about how the accessibility of the learning that Elucidat creates can be improved, please do comment below or send us an email at


The author's role in creating accessible learning

Elucidat allows an unprecedented level of control for authors, and so, as you create learning, you have an important role in making courses that are fully accessible. Creating accessible content doesn't just mean ensuring it can be read by screen readers. It also means that is easily digestible and navigable by all types of people. By building your content to be accessible from the ground up, you're ensuring that your learning can be accessed by as wide an audience as possible.

The following advice will help you to build courses with accessibility in mind.

Text size

Err on the generous side. You should ideally use font sizes of at least 16 px. 

The Macular Society provides some great advice for preparing documents with accessibility in mind. It's good to keep in mind that clear, visible text benefits everyone, not just people who are visually impaired. 

Text structure

The structure of your text is very important to facilitate the understanding of its content.

For instance, don't use a heading just because you want bigger text. A screen reader follows a hierarchy when reading out text. Headings will be read out before text, so if your heading isn't actually a heading, you'll confuse people.

Its important to understand the importance of correct document structure and this importance doesn't just stop at screen readers. Good structure also makes it easier for all learners to read and digest what is being said.

Text colour / contrast

Contrast is key to the readability of text.

Ensure that contrast between important visual elements is high, either by using very different tones, or by using very different colours e.g. black and yellow.

This example has insufficient contrast making it more difficult to read the text:

If you're unsure whether the colours you're using contrast sufficiently, you can use WebAIM's Contrast Checker.

Colour coding

Avoid using colour coding as a way to convey meaning. For instance, colouring text green to indicate something positive. Differing colours may be distracting or not as visible to certain users.

If you do use this, ensure that the same meaning is conveyed in the text content as well.


Be cautious of using transparency excessively. Transparency can cause big problems for readability. A partially visible image behind text would be very hard to read for learners who are visually impaired.

This example is not very accessible. The text is difficult to see against the background:

This example is much more accessible. The text is clear and easily readable:


Elucidat provides you some fun animation options to apply to your elearning. This can be a great tool to supplement your learning content, however it's best to be cautious about using animation excessively, especially fast, flickering or jiggling movements. They can be distracting or cause discomfort or confusion.

If meaning is conveyed by an animation, it is important that your meaning is conveyed in another way as well, as animation will not be read out by screen reading software.

Keep in mind that most major browsers and mobile OSs will also restrict animation as autoplaying behaviour. This means that we cannot guarantee that animation will work consistently across different browsers and devices for all users.


If you are using images within a course to convey meaning, it is important to use images consistently and ensure they convey the same meaning every time it is used (for example a 'success' or 'failure' or 'progress' image should be consistent throughout).

Ensure that your meaning is also conveyed in the text content. If you have an image that conveys 'success', ensure that it is accompanied by text that says the same.

You may also want to add useful, descriptive Alt text to your images to ensure that they are read out by screen readers. You can read about how to do this in Elucidat in Adding Alt Text to an image

Multimedia content

If you are including video or audio, ensure that you include an introduction before the video to introduce the content and tell the learner how to interact with it.

Always ensure that you include a transcript of the multimedia content.

Forms and interactions

Include an introduction and clear instructions before any forms or interactions, telling the learner how to use them.

Document flow

Elucidat offers a huge amount of visual control. This is fabulous for creating rich visual layouts, but it also means that it is possible to drag items out of order.

For instance, in the following example:

The last item is dragged from last, to second. For a screen reader, the reading order would stay as it was originally.

As such, if reading order is critical to the understanding of the page, it will be important to maintain the order (often by deleting items that find themselves in the wrong order or swapping the text about, rather than dragging).

Interaction and page types

While Elucidat offers a wide selection of interactions, certain types may be suitable all learners. For instance, both the Drag and Drop and Sortable activities rely on a learner using (and being adept with) a mouse. This will exclude anyone using keyboard navigation, such as screen reader users.

If you'd like to use a Drag and Drop interaction, we'd recommend using an alternative Drag and Drop interaction called the Responsive Drag and Drop which is able to be used with keyboard navigation and screen readers.

When adding pages in Elucidat, you'll see that we have marked which Page Types are recommended for courses with accessibility in mind. For a full list, see Accessible page types.




You may want to include audio alternatives to text on screen if possible. If you do this, ensure the audio and text convey the same information. You shouldn't rely on a learner being able to hear the audio in order for them to progress or understand what to do.


We recommend that you read Disability etiquette on Wikipedia. This is a great article with information and advice about inclusive language.

Words like 'click' imply that learners are using a mouse. If you use 'click' then you ought to use alternatives too. 

Links are summarised by screen readers so ensure that you make the sentence that is linked self-sufficient so that it will make sense out of context.

For these reasons consider using alternatives like 'Select this link to go to the next page' rather than 'Click here'.

Lastly: Try the tools yourself

You shouldn't assume anything about how people will use your course. Try the tools yourself!

Download JAWS if you're using Windows and give your course a go.

If you are using a Mac, turn on VoiceOver with the keyboard shortcut, Command+F5.

Test with real people

We can't stress this point enough. You can tick all of the boxes above, but always remember to test your learning with real learners.

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