Assuming that a Word document has been created in an accessible way the accessibility should be retained when converting to PDF.
How to convert a Word document to PDF
- Select Save As on the Word File tab.
- Ensure the file name is correct. From the Save as type drop down list select PDF.
- Click on Options and ensure Create bookmarks using: is checked and Headings selected.
- Ensure Document structure tags for accessibility is checked.
- Click on OK and Save.
- Remember you can use Sensus Access Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software on PDFs that have been scanned from hard copies to ensure text is fully accessible to screen readers.
- To ensure that a PDF is accessible it should be checked by opening it in Adobe Reader and listening to it being read by selecting View then Read out loud. (You will have to Activate Read Out Loud first if you have not already done so, and then can select Read this page only or Read to end of document).
- Text to speech in PDFs
- Creating accessible PDFs: how to make PDFs that everyone can use.