PDF is a format or type of document. Its main purpose is to preserve the formatting of a document. According to WebAIM, an "accessible" PDF file generally refers to a "tagged" PDF file. PDF tags provide a hidden, structured representation of the PDF content that is presented to screen readers. They exist for accessibility purposes only and have no visible effect on the PDF file.
PDFs are typically created in one of two ways:
list adapted from https://it.ucsf.edu/how-to/accessible-pdf-best-practices
Several programs support creating accessible documents keep their accessibility information intact when converted to PDF. These include Microsoft Office (Word, PowerPoint, or Excel), Adobe InDesign, LibreOffice, and OpenOffice.org.
The most popular of these tools—Microsoft Office—has good overall accessibility that continues to improve with each version. For example, a document created in Word should contain almost all the information necessary for an accessible PDF, including:
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.