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Screen reading resources for study

A guide for users who require assistance for screen reading.

The NVDA screen reader - video clip

Please note this video has closed captions but does not have a transcript.

Adobe Digital Editions - video clip

Please note this video has closed captions but does not have a transcript.

Tools for screen reading

Do you need assistance with screen reading to find scholarly resources such as journals articles and ebooks to support your academic study? The following software will help you if you suffer from eye fatigue or find it hard to keep track of small text. You can also use the software to listen to the content as well as gain increased comprehension for heavy texts.

All links on this page will open in the same window.

Read Aloud

Read Aloud is a free text-to-speech function in the Microsoft products for Windows and Mac. The function allows you to select text and have it read aloud, and the words highlighted. Read Aloud is available in: Edge browser, Microsoft 365, Word for Web, Web App, and Word versions from 2016 on.

Accessibility features in Microsoft Edge (select 'Have the web read aloud to you' link)

Listen to your Word documents

Enable Read Aloud feature in Microsoft edge (Video 2:11 minutes)

Immersive Reader

Microsoft Immersive Reader provides a cleaner, simpler layout, removes clutter, and helps with reading comprehension. It is available in Edge, Windows 10, Windows 11, and Microsoft 365.

You can customise your reading experience by changing text size, spacing, page colour, grammar tools, line focus, and translation.

Accessibility features in Edge (Select 'Read more comfortably')

Microsoft 365 learning Tools (Video 1:35 minutes)

Live Captions

Enable the Live Caption function in Google Chrome to caption media.

Job Access With Speech (JAWS)

Provides speech and Braille output for the most popular personal computer applications.

Find out more about JAWS.

Microsoft Dictate

Microsoft Dictate is a speech-to-text function that allows you to use your voice to create documents, emails, and notes. It is available in Microsoft 365, Word for the web, and Word versions from 2016 on.

Dictate your documents in Word

How to use Dictation and voice commands in Microsoft Word (Video 3:47 minutes)

Mac computers have a built in speech-to-text called Voice Control which allows you to navigate and dictate using your voice.

Non Visual Desktop Access (NVDA)

A free screen reader which works with Microsoft Windows to read text on the screen.

To find out more about the NVDA screen reader, including system requirements and to download, go to NVDA screen reader home.


Text to speech software for Windows which converts Word documents, Emails, web pages and PDF files into natural sounding speech. Recommended for reading journal articles in PDF file formats. Download TextAloud.

VoiceOver for macOS

Learn more about this built-in accessibility feature including gesture control, Braille display, audio descriptions and International natural speaking voices  VoiceOver for Mac.


A Microsoft digital app for use on various devices which allows you to collaborate, collect, and share information.


From grammar to spelling to style and tone, Grammarly's suggestions are comprehensive, helping you communicate effectively and as you intend.

Adobe Digital Editions

Adobe Digital Editions is free software which enables you to download and manage digital publications such as ebooks and files in PDF and EPUB formats. This software allows you to organise your eBooks into your own custom library and effectively annotate pages.

Adobe Digital Editions is compatible with screen reading software, JAWS, NVDA or Window-Eyes on Windows and VoiceOver on Mac.

Please note: Windows-based screen reading software must be installed separately on your computer.

Download Adobe Digital Editions.

Adobe Reader

Adobe Reader is free software which enables you to read the information contained in PDF files particularly using Windows and Mac operating systems.

To download Adobe's latest version of Adobe Reader and a screen readers users guide, go to, Adobe Reader and user's guide.

Adobe Reader 6.0 or later has a Read Out Loud text to speech tool for Windows and Macs.

To activate this tool, open your PDF file in Adobe Reader, from the tool bar select View > Read Out loud > Activate Read Out Loud. Keyboard shortcut: Shift + Ctrl + V (Windows) or Shift + Command + E (Mac OS).

Find out more about other Adobe Reader accessibility options.

Tip: Use the TextAloud Toolbar to read your journal articles online.

Assistive online tools - weblinks

Web browser accessibility extensions - weblinks

Computer accessibility guides

Free assistive mobile tools - weblinks

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