Contact Us | Donate | Advertise Follow us on TwitterFollow us on facebookFollow us on LinkedIn

Make Your MLA '21 Presentation Accessible

To provide the best experience for MLA '21 attendees and members, MLA asks ALL presenters to make their presentations as accessible as possible.

  • MLA has contracted with our meeting content provider, CadmiumCD, to enable new tools for audio recording (posters) and video recording (slides for papers, lightning talks, Exhibitor Solution Showcases). The new tools offer both recording AND editing of captions.
  • If presenters are uploading or linking to video recordings rather than using CadmiumCD tools, tips for recording slides with captions are noted below.
  • Plenary Sessions will be captioned live and lightly edited post-conference to provide better accuracy.
  • Immersion session recordings (recorded with Zoom and captioned with the artificial intelligence engine will be lightly edited post-conference to provide better accuracy.
  • Other accessibility options may be available depending on meeting registrants' needs.

Special thanks to the Accessibility and Disability Caucus of MLA for providing many of the resources below. Last updated February 4, 2021.

If you have other resource to share, please email Kate Corcoran.

General Tips

Designing Presentation Slides

  • Be selective. Cut unneeded details. Extra information clutters up your presentation.
  • Do not use color as the only way to convey meaning or information.
  • Ensure the colors you use have a high contrast. Use the WebAIM contrast checker.
  • Use larger font size (larger than 18 pt) with sufficient white space.
  • Avoid putting too much text on one slide and instead break up the content.
  • If using PowerPoint, avoid using text boxes and use the predefined slide layouts.
  • Avoid animations or complicated slide transitions.
  • Make a unique title for each slide.

During Your Presentation (Including While Recording)

  • Practice your presentation and the tools you will use. You will speak more clearly if you practice.
  • You're an expert on your content: remove any "upspeak" or "uptalk".
  • Remove distracting fillers, such as "um", "like", or "you know"—and replace with pauses.
  • Pauses give people time to process what you have shared.
  • Be familiar with any tools you will use. You will better engage audience members if you test that tools you use work.
  • Use “Always use subtitles” in PowerPoint online or Google Slides’ auto captioning option.
  • Share a low-vision handout of your presentation with plain-text descriptions of non-decorative images.
  • Including alt-text of images is also useful. When you convert slides to handouts or PDFs, make sure the program embeds your alt-tags.




Readability and Understanding