ARC-BC Request a Format

Format Requests and Student Access

There are a number of digital alternate formats supported in the ARC-BC repository. Users can request the format that best meets the student's access requirements. These formats are listed below along with information on typical use cases and production parameters.

Electronic Publication (EPUB)

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Electronic Publication (EPUB) files represent the next generation of accessible digital learning content. An EPUB file is an archive consisting of HTML files along with embedded images and other multimedia content. EPUB files maintain the image and graphics content of the original document with text-based alternatives added to make this content accessible to users of text-to-speech output. Users can also increase the font type and size with page formatting that reflows in response. EPUB files are accessed by many popular text-to-speech apps and others such as Apple Books and the Microsoft Edge browser. EPUB files produced by ARC-BC enable access functionality that is useful to all students with perceptual disabilities. ARC-BC is currently able to produce novels and primary-level nonfiction titles in EPUB. This section will be updated as the production of more advanced content in EPUB format becomes available.

Portable Document Format (PDF)

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This is one of the most common formats available online. PDF files produced by ARC-BC are readable by many apps and other assistive software. PDF files are typically requested on behalf of students who require text-to-speech functionality and also require visual access to the formatting and layout of the original print document.

Kurzweil Files (KES)

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Files with the KES extension are usable with the Kurzweil suite of learning assistance applications. KES files provide the same basic functionality as PDF files but have the advantage of the reading and writing support provided by Kurzweil software. KES files are typically requested on behalf of students who require text-to-speech functionality and also require visual access to the formatting and layout of the original print document. KES files also offer advanced reading and writing support for students with comprehension disabilities as well as enlargement and highlighting features for students with visual impairments.

Electronic Text (DOCX)

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Electronic Text (e-Text) files in the ARC-BC repository are in DOCX format and is recognizable to most users as the default extension of Microsoft Word files. E-Text files contain detailed markup and tagging that replaces the original formatting of the document so that the content is rendered into synthesized speech and refreshable braille output. Images and graphical content are removed in e-Text files and replaced with text-based alternatives. E-Text files are generally requested on behalf of students who require non-visual access to content or on behalf of students who benefit from a simplified version of the original document. Titles that include intermediate or senior level mathematical or technical content are not currently available in e-Text format as digitally accessible math/technical content is under development.