Use Ally to OCR and Tag a Scanned PDF


Scanned PDFs are commonly used in the academic world. You may find yourself scanning from a textbook or a magazine article. Although the PDF looks like real text, the scan essentially creates an image of the text, which is completely inaccessible to students with visual impairments and can be problematic for everyone. The following practices using Ally in D2L can help you create a more accessible PDF document from a scanned image.


With the integration of Ally into D2L, it is now possible to create a more accessible PDF from the scanned text. This process involves using the alternative format option "OCRed PDF". OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition, which pulls the text out from the image to create real text. The OCRed PDF option will also tag the PDF, which is essential to improve its accessibility.

In addition to creating real text from the scanned image and tagging the PDF, the OCRed PDF option will clean up the look of the scan. Often times, scans can be crooked or include shadows from creases in the binding. Going through this process can help improve the visual appearance of the PDF.

Download OCRed PDF from Alternative Formats

In your content, find the scanned PDF file and select the alternative download button to the right of the file name.

Make sure the OCRed PDF option is selected, then click Download.

Update your file with the newly downloaded file. 

Update Your File

From the Content Page

When your file is selected, click the dropdown arrow to the right of the file name and select Change File.


From the Instructor Feedback Panel

Select the Accessibility Score Indicator on the right next to the file.

Either Drag and Drop your updated file or search for it by selecting the Browse button.

Once you've done this, you should see your accessibility score for that document increase.



Article ID: 111828
Tue 7/14/20 2:57 PM
Wed 7/15/20 10:14 AM