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University of Oregon
UO Libraries

Text Descriptions of Images in Guides

This guide contains a long text description of images used in guides for web accessibility.

About this Guide

All teaching librarians are editors on this guide to use it as a landing place for a text-based description of a complex graphic. This is a privately published guide.

Why use this guide instead of alt text?

The alt text field doesn’t allow for structural elements like headers or bulleted lists. In addition, complex images that can sometimes benefit from a longer description that walks a user through a process or provides additional context. For screen shots with a simple arrow or box, a short description in alt text is usually sufficient. Additional guidance for using the alt text field is available in the instruction guide as well (link removed for privacy).

How can I add to this guide?

When adding a new text description of a graphic, please put it on its own page to make it easier on someone who is using a screen reader to use (rather than multiple boxes on a single page). Then, to get the link click the pencil/edit logo and look for the box link tab to copy and paste into your graphic’s box. Here are detailed steps on how to do this.

Add new pages in alphabetical order, please!

If you do create infographics that have linked text descriptions, please also consider putting the image into the **Shared UO Boxes guide (you can contact the LibGuides Team for assistance ( or the AAA Instruction Shared Boxes guide (editor: Bronwen).


It’s OK to be a little redundant between the public-facing text above the image and the text description, as shown in the Research Process infographic on this guide. That redundancy can help a user with a screen reader to decide if they want to look at the graphic description or not.

Thanks, Bronwen Maxson

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