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Accessibility

Add Alt Text to an Image in Canvas

Last updated on November 3, 2021

Before reading this guide, be sure to familiarize yourself with Accessibility Basics and Best Practices for Images and Alternative Text.

Alternative text (alt text) is an important component for any image you use in your course to ensure that students using screen readers have the same understanding of an image as they would visually. It is also an institutional standard at MSU Denver.

Directions

https://msudenver.yuja.com/V/Video?v=1236262&node=4671202&a=1644706134

Option 1: Change the Image File Name

In Canvas, the file name is the default alt text, which is usually inaccessible, but if you change the file name to the alt text, it will always be inserted when the image is placed into Canvas content. This first option should be used for images you will not use more than once (repeating images generally means you will need to adjust the alt text to reflect the shifting context).

  1. Go to MSU Denver’s Faculty and Staff Hub.
  2. Click Canvas in the Teaching & Learning section.
  3. Log in to your Canvas Account.
  4. Select the Course you’d like to work in.
  5. Click Files in the course navigation menu on the left.
  6. Upload your Image into the Files area of your Canvas course.
    1. Refer to our tutorial, “Upload Files to Canvas” if you need help with this step.
  7. Locate the File Title you wish to change.
  8. Hover over the File.
  9. Click the More Options Menu (three vertical dots) at the right end of the file line.
  10. Click Rename.
  11. Type the New Name you want to match the default alt text.
  12. Click the Check Mark to save.

Option 2: Add or Edit Alt Text for an Image that Already Exists in a Canvas Page

This option is best for images whose alt text needs to be adjusted for the nuanced contexts of a course/module.

  1. Go to MSU Denver’s Faculty and Staff Hub.
  2. Click Canvas in the Teaching & Learning section.
  3. Log in to your Canvas Account.
  4. Select the Course you’d like to work in.
  5. Click on Modules from the course navigation menu on the left.
  6. Click on the Title of the Page that contains the image you want to add alt text to.
  7. Click on Edit (pencil icon) at the top right.
  8. Click on an Image to highlight it.
  9. Click Image Options text that pops up.
  10. Locate the Image Options window displayed on the right.
  11. Type the Alt Text in the box under Alt-Text.
  12. Click Done.

Option 3: Add Alt Text When Inserting a New Image in the Rich Content Editor

You can also add alt text to your images when you add them to a Canvas page for the first time, as described below.

  1. Go to MSU Denver’s Faculty and Staff Hub.
  2. Click Canvas in the Teaching & Learning section.
  3. Log in to your Canvas Account.
  4. Select the Course you’d like to work in.
  5. Click on Modules from the course navigation menu on the left.
  6. Click on the Title of the Page where you want to insert your image.
  7. Click on Edit (pencil icon) at the top right.
  8. Click the Insert Image icon.
  9. Select the Option for where your image is located (already in the course or upload).
  10. Locate the Image.
  11. Click Open.
  12. Scroll down in the Upload Image window.
  13. Type your Alt Text under Attributes.
  14. Click Submit.