​Accessible Email Guidelines

When sending information to email distribution lists (especially to all staff and to all students), you are responsible for making all parts of your message accessible to all recipients. Information that is not included in the email itself, but is linked from the email, must also be accessible. This is required by law.

The most common obstacles for individuals using visual assistive technology are text embedded in images and poorly structured documents. The most common obstacle for people who are deaf or hard of hearing is lack of captioning in videos.

Ways to improve email accessibility for users of visual assistive technology:

  • Use plain text messages and avoid attachments.
  • If you must use attachments, properly structure and tag information in the attachment.
  • Never use text that is scanned or is part of a bitmap image, without providing the same information in a text format.
  • To test your message and attachments for basic accessibility, select (highlight) the text in your message, and copy-and-paste it into another document. If this works, your message can be processed by visual assistive technology.

Ways to improve email accessibility for individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing:

  • If your message includes a video link, make sure the video is captioned.
  • If a captioned version of the video is not available, provide a written transcript of the video.
  • Transcripts can be embedded into the video using specialized software available through captioning media within the Teaching and Technology Center.