iPad (iOS12) Built-in Accessibility Features

iPad has several accessibility features which have evolved over the years. As previously noted, in this course, we focus on iOS 12 and iPadOS, the two most recent versions of iOS.

iOS 12 which was launched by Apple Inc. in 2018 has many built-in accessibility features for individuals across a range of disabilities. All accessibility features can be accessed as follows: 

  • Click on Settings icon
  • On the left side panel, click on General icon
  • On the right side panel, click on Accessibility tab

Here, we mainly focus on features that can particularly benefit students with learning difficulties. 

1. Speech

This offers the following options: 

1.1. Speak Selection

Students can highlight the specific range of text they want to hear and customise the colour in which it will be highlighted. They can then follow along as highlighted words, sentences, or words within each sentence are read aloud.

1.2. Speak Screen 

Students can use this feature to have all the content on pages read back to them. For this, all they need to do is swipe down from the top of the screen with two fingers. 

1.3. Typing Feedback

With Typing Feedback activated, students can hear each letter they type on the keyboard spoken aloud.

2. Guided access

Guided Access helps students with autism or other attention and sensory challenges stay focused on the task or app at hand. Teachers and parents can limit iPad to stay on one app by disabling the Home button, and limit the amount of time spent in an app. 

3. Predictive Text 

Predictive Text suggests word options that students can listen to and choose from to get help with spelling. 

NOTE: This option is not in the Accessibility tab. Instead, it is found in the Keyboard tab. To access it, follow the steps given below:

  • Click on Settings icon
  • On the left side panel, click on General icon
  • On the right side panel, click on Keyboard tab

Besides the above, there are additional accessibility features in iPad iOS12 that can benefit students with other kinds of disabilities:

4. Reader View in Safari browser

The Reader View in Safari browser helps students to avoid sensory overload when navigating the internet. The Reader View does this by stripping away buttons and navigation bars, allowing students to focus on just the content. 

Reader View works with Speak Selection and VoiceOver to provide auditory reinforcement for what students see on the screen.

In Reader View, students can also change the background colour, font type and font size of the web page for easy reading. 

Learn how to enable Reader View in Safari browser.

NOTE: Reader view may not work with some web pages. 

Useful Resources