Check Accessibility in Word

Check the accessibility of your documents in Word using the built-in tools.

Instructions on the Microsoft Office website

Check Heading Structure

Heading structure is essential for document navigation.

To check the heading structure of your document:

  1. Click the View tab
  2. Select "Navigation Pane" in the Show group
  3. The navigation pane will appear to the left of your document

Results for document with no heading structure.

example of navigation pane in Word indicating no heading strcuture

Results for document with heading structure.
Note outline form.

example of navigation pane in Word indicating heading strcuture

Check Accessibility

To check your Word document for accessibility issues:

  1. Click on the File tab
  2. Click ion the Check for Issues button
  3. Select Check Accessibiliity
  4. The results will appear to the right of your document

red arrow pointing to Check Accessibility in Word check issue options


The list will inlcude the type of issue/warning and where it occurs in your document.

To locate an issue in your document, click to highlight it in the list:

accessibility check result with red arrow pointing to table alt text issue

Additional Information

When an issue is selected, additional information and instructions for fixing it will appear at the bottom of the results pane:

example of additional information pane in Word accessibility checker