Ensuring Your Captivate Project is Accessible

Lady in a kayak paddling away from the shore while behind her on the shore is an empty wheelchair.
In this photo of a woman in a kayak in the water
with an empty wheelchair behind her on the sandy beach;
is she Handicaped?

Steps to Accessibility

Enable 508 Compliance

  • Project Level
    • Project Publish Settings:
      • Enable Accessibility
      • Restrict keyboard tabbing to slide items only
      • Project Information
  • Slide Level
    • Slide Accessibility text
  • Object level
    • Item Accessibility
    • Accessibility Name
    • Accessibility Description
    • Auto Label

The following Adobe Captivate elements are accessible when the 508 Compliance option is selected:

Note: Simply checking this box is not enough to make a Captivate project scenario. It just gives you access to some of the tools you need in order to do so.

  • Project name (derived from Project Properties)
  • Project description (derived from Project Properties)
  • Slide accessibility text
  • Slide label (derived from Slide Properties)
  • Buttons
  • Playback controls (The function of each button is read by screen readers)
  • Password protection (If an Adobe Captivate SWF file is password protected, the prompt for a password is read by screen readers)
  • Question slides
    • Title, question, answers, button text, and scoring report are read by screen readers.
  • Output generated with the Section 508 option is displayed by all supported browsers. However, your output may not be Section 508-compliant unless it is viewed with Internet Explorer. Internet Explorer is the only browser with support for MSAA (Microsoft Active Accessibility).


"Video presents some unique challenges when it comes to accessibility. People who are deaf can’t hear the audio but can read the screen; and people who are blind can hear the audio but can't see the screen. Some videos can move too quickly for those with cognitive disabilities to process. When rendering your Captivate project as a video, you must incorporate principles of accessibility."

Valerie Bergloff, Office of Process Improvement,Texas Health and Human Services
Guidelines for Developing Accessible Captivate Projects (PDF)

  • Make sure to enable closed captioning.
  • Time the closed captioning to match the audio and the events on the screen.
  • Include subtitles and a description of important sounds when appropriate. For example, “(music playing) Welcome to your course.”
  • Consider providing a text only version of the video. Ensure there is enough information in the text to get across your message without images.
  • When using text and color in your video, use large text, use colors that are high contrast, and leave the text on the screen long enough to be read comfortably.
  • Do not set the video to play automatically. Let the user decide when the video starts.
  • Don’t use flashing content. Flashing content may cause seizures.