Alternative Text Access Information

About Alternative Formats

University of Alaska Fairbanks' Disability Services offers, for academic use, the conversion of textbooks to a format more accessible by students requiring this service.

To request an alternative format textbook conversion, a student is required to meet several conditions. These are:

  • The material(s) being converted must be a copy legal for use in the United States.
  • The material(s) being converted must be legally owned by the student.
  • The material(s) being converted will, on intake, have their bindings removed, and will not be restorable to the original condition. This may reduce the resale value of the book.
  • For additional requirements or information, contact Disability Services.

How does the Alternative Format Process Work?

University of Alaska Fairbanks Disability Services currently utilizes state-of-the-art OCR (Optical Character Recognition) software, in conjunction with several other programs, to convert a book to an alternative format. Currently, we support the following formats:

  • Daisy 2 & 3
  • Microsoft Word
  • Adobe PDF

These formats allow qualifying students to more easily use their textbooks or class handouts, through the use of a magnifier or screen reader when a traditional paper format is not otherwise usable.

What is a Screen Reader?

A screen reader is a software package installed on a computer to read digital text aloud. This selection of software is particularly useful when traditional paper formats are not sufficient for a student's needs. The Assistive Technology Lab supports the use of JAWS, ZoomText, and Dolphin EasyReader for use as screen readers.

Accessing / Requesting Alternative Format Texts

To request alternative format texts, contact Disability Services by phone at (907)474-5655 or by email at

For more information, see Alternative Format Text Conversion Policies and Procedures.


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