A scanned document is often times necessary for an instructor to use in their course. Not only is it a convenient way to provide course readings, it can help students save money as opposed to purchasing a textbook. However, a scanned document requires certain steps to produce a high quality and accessible format for students using assistive technology. Poorly scanned documents can negatively impact all of your student’s learning experience, not just users with assistive technology!
A scan that is of high quality should be easy for students of all abilities to read. This includes students with low vision and those who rely on text to speech assistive technologies. Adobe Acrobat DC is the preferred program to use to create high quality scans.
In order to create a high quality scan, please avoid the following:
This scanned document is crooked. It may be hard for students to read and for text to speech programs to recognize.
Scanned document contains shadows from the book’s spine. Text to speech technologies have a hard time recognizing text that is in a shadow.
This scanned document has clear/legible text, is free of shadows and highlighting, and has correct alignment.
Example A: Scan with two page's of information on one page in PDF.
Example B: a cropped page with a single page's content.
BRISS is a free to download application that is perfect for cropping scans into separate pages.
Scans can be very difficult to edit to increase accessibility and usability. Luckily, scans can be downloaded in a more accessible format with Ally. Simply upload a PDF scan that is not OCRed into Cougar Courses. Then click on the Alternative Format button and download the OCRed PDF format.
Ally's OCR download can turn your PDF scan from this...
If you do not have access to a scanner, you can still produce high quality scans from a mobile device. The Adobe Scan mobile app allows you to scan documents in high quality, which you then can upload to Acrobat Pro DC to make an edits and accessibility checks. Adobe Scan is available for download in the Apple App Store and Google Play.
If you have any questions about creating high quality scans, please email firstname.lastname@example.org