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Example of accessible formatting for course outline document

Version 2 2023-12-29, 03:32
Version 1 2023-06-02, 02:57
educational resource
posted on 2023-06-02, 02:57 authored by Yuet Kwan Ma, Cherry ChoiCherry Choi, Pui Sze Yeung

Accessible formatting involved in this course outline sample:

  • Heading structure
  • Font, font size, bullet points and numbered lists
  • Tables
  • Paragraph and line spacing, and page break
  • Link texts
  • Colour scheme with sufficient colour contrast between text, hyperlinks, and background
  • This Word document is a “live” template. It already defines the styling and format of each component of the course outline sample.
  • Basic instructions to modify the content and examples are provided.
  • The main formatting tools are the “Styles Pane” and the “Spacing” settings in the “Paragraph” command pane.
  • Section on accessibility arrangement is included. Students are encouraged to contact the course instructors for discussion on matters related to accessibility arrangement as early as possible to facilitate communication and timely arrangement.

Instructions to use this course outline sample:

  • Go through the instructions document before customizing the course outline sample to suit your own style and teaching materials.
  • Note that this document does not guarantee “full accessibility”.
  • Go to the video on enhancing accessibility of Word document for more information.

This work is one of the deliverables of the Project entitled “Promoting accessibility of virtual teaching and learning through a train-the-trainer approach” funded by the UGC Special Grant for Strategic Development of Virtual Teaching and Learning in 2021-2023.

Suggested citation:

Ma, G. Y. K., Choi, C., & Yeung, P. P. S. (2023). Example of accessible formatting for course outline [.docx file]. #IDEALeaders Self-learning Series: Co-creation of virtual learning accessibility. HKU Data Repository.

Virtual Learning Accessibility Toolkit: PDF version and Website version

Points to note:

  • This work is intended to serve as a general guide for enhancing the accessibility of a course outline document. The recommended practices in this work are not exhaustive or best solutions. This work does not necessarily guarantee “full accessibility”. This work is created for knowledge exchange and educational purposes. Teaching and learning practices might vary across academic disciplines, as well as individual preferences and needs. The recommended practices need to be fit and applied to various disciplinary contexts and authentic practices.
  • Note that the content of this work only serves for illustration purpose and reference. This document does not represent any true information of any courses in real life.
  • Please be aware that fulfilling all the practices suggested by this work would not guarantee “full accessibility”. Use your own best judgment. Always be aware of and respect the diverse access needs of different individuals.
  • This work does not contain any business promotion elements.
  • Software, programmes, and operating systems are constantly and rapidly developing along with changing accessibility functions. Statements in this work about the functions of any software, programmes, and operating systems may no longer represent their current status.
  • It is possible that the hyperlinks of the cited resources in this work might be edited or removed by the corresponding contributors after the publication of this work.


The UGC Special Grant for Strategic Development of Virtual Teaching and Learning in 2021-2023