Virginia Tech™home

Tips for Using Alternate Text

  • Become proficient in locating alternate text formats on your own. SSD encourages students to be aware of options in locating and purchasing already available alternate text formats, such as Bookshare ( and Learning Ally (
  • Submit alternate text format requests early.  Locating and/or reformatting electronic files can take several months.  Therefore SSD posts a due date so we can locate and reformat your materials in a timely manner.
  • Contact your professors early. Once you receive your schedule, collect a list of your required reading. If you cannot locate the required reading contact the instructor or department. You may need to self-identify and explain why you need the information. If you do not receive a timely reply please contact
  • Learn to use a variety of formats and text-to-speech options.  Many computers, tablets, e-readers and Smartphones have text to speech abilities included. Investigate and use text to speech options. Learn what options are available to you and how to use them.