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Assistive Software

Here are guides on assistive software assigned by category.

Introduction

You can activate a variety of accessibility options and programs in Windows 10  that make it easier to see, hear, and use your computer by going to “Ease of Access Center” in the Control Panel and “Display” under System Settings.

Turn on accessibility features such as:

  • Enlarge text on screen
  • Magnifier (screen magnifier)
  • Narrator (screen reader)
  • Cursor thickness
  • Mouse pointer colour and size

To change your display settings

Go to Control Panel > Ease of Access Center > Make the computer easier to see > Make things on the screen larger > Select “Change the size of text and icons"
 
Change the size of text and icons under Ease of Access settings in the Control Panel

Under the Display menu, change the scale and layout to magnify the screen icons and text.  Change the size of text and icons under the Display menu

Note: Some items such as icons on your Desktop may not fit on your screen if the display is set to 125% or 150%.

Magnifier

Magnifier (in Windows 10) has three modes, full screen, lens and docked mode.

To activate Magnifier:
Go to Start > Control Panel > Ease of Access Center > Quick access to common tools > Start Magnifier
Start magnifier in the Ease of Access Center under the Control Panel

  

How to customise magnifier:
Click on “Views” in the Magnifier pop-up window to select the mode.

  Changing the mode in Magnifier by selecting one of the options under the Views tab

Changing the Mode
 
Lens mode
Lens Mode


Click on the gear icon to change the magnifier options, such as the percentage increase each time you zoom in.

Change the magnifier settings by clicking the gear icon

Narrator

The basic screen reader in Windows reads aloud limited on-screen text and describes some events that occur, or error messages that appear, while you're using the computer. Narrator can read out individual letters as you type in search boxes or in Word applications.


To activate Narrator:
Go to Start > Control Panel > Ease of Access Center > Quick access to common tools > Start Narrator

Start Narrator in the Ease of Access Center under the Control Panel.

Note: Narrator cannot read chunks of text in documents. To read aloud text, you can download and use NaturalReader (free version available) or Window-Eyes (free version available for users with licensed Microsoft Office 2010 and above).

To change the thickness of the blinking cursor

Go to Start > Control Panel > Ease of Access Center > Make the computer easier to see > Make things on the screen easier to see > Set the thickness of the blinking cursor

  Set the thickness of the blinking cursor in the Ease of Access Center

To change the color and size of mouse pointers

Go to Start > Control Panel > Ease of Access Center > Make the mouse easier to see > Mouse pointers > Change the color and size of mouse pointers

Change the colour and size of your mouse cursor in the Ease of Access Center

Useful Links

Learn more about accessibility options and programs in Windows  that make it easier to see, hear, and use your computer.