Skip to Main Content

Screen Reading and Library Resources: A Guide for ADA Accessibility: Major Vendors' Accessible Databases

Ebsco Databases

Built in ADA Accessibility Features in Databases

All of the EBSCO vendor databases (see list below) have a read aloud feature for HTML articles that may be manually activated.

  • choose the HTML Full Text option, the Listen icon appears on the Tools list just under the title of the article
  • you may select three different accents and reading speeds
  • to pause the reading, click on the pause button
  • For more information on searching EBSCO databases with JAWS 8.0, visit:

We will continue to add information to this page. If you have accessibility problems with any online resources please let us know by contacting the Library.

The instructions mainly relate to screen readers with some information for keyboard only users.  Resources were tested using Firefox but hopefully they will be useful for other screen readers and browsers.

Screen Reader Instructions for EBSCO Databases

Instructions for screen reader and keyboard users:

Access the database, enter your search terms and press Enter to conduct the search. The resulting references are listed so that the Add to folder option appears after the title of the article it relates to.

Full text is provided in HTML or PDF or in some cases both formats. Use the HTML version when available. If only a PDF is provided and you are using JAWS, use Adobe Reader 7.0 to convert the article, but it will not always read in a linear fashion.  If full text is not provided you can check if the Full Text Finder service has access to it via another supplier.  Add the references you are interested in to a folder and opt to list them, then if you use links list in JAWS, the email, print and save to disk options are towards the bottom of the list. To carry out another search choose the Advanced Search link.

For keyboard users there are problems navigating an individual record using Internet Explorer, making it difficult to return to your results.  You are advised to use the links to full text etc provided in the results list or use Firefox instead.


List of EBSCO databases with the Read Aloud Feature

Gale Databases

Gale Databases provide a Listen function for full-text articles. This can be found on the detailed display screen, which can be accessed by clicking on the title of the article from the search results.  Articles that are not in full-text do not have this option. 

Further detail can be found at:

Proquest Databases

Instructions for screen reader users:

If you are using Internet Explorer and want to specify date ranges in Advanced Search use ALT + DOWN ARROW to open the Date Range combo box and use the up and down arrows to move through the options.  Press enter to choose the appropriate date range, which may then open another box for you to enter the date details.  If you don't access the combo box this way JAWS is confused when the additional date range boxes are automatically generated as you move through the options and stops reading.  This does not happen with Firefox.  Choose Full Text, rather than Full Text - PDF, where available.  Once you are in Full Text, select level heading 2, to move straight to the full text.