In this post, I’m sharing with you 8 great Chrome accessibility extensions for classmates to use. The aim is to increase digital equity and make learning easier for all students. Using these extensions will allow students to change their online reading experience using tools that will reduce their eye strain and create a conducive environment for them to focus and mono-task. This will enable them: navigating the web using the keyboard, interacting with web pages using both text-to-speech and voice dictation, typing complex mathematical equations and formulas easily, and more. For similar extensions, you can also check out this collection of Chrome accessibility extensions posted in the past.
As his name inColor Enhancer is especially useful for people who are partially blind. It implements customizable color filters that enable users to recognize colors on a web page. Here’s how it is Works:
- “To turn on the extension, to the right of the address bar, click Color Enhancer.
- Click Setup.
- Choose a row of color combinations with the largest level of color confusion.
- Move the slider to adjust the color correction level. Choose a setting where you can see as many stars as possible with minimal color distortion.
- When you’re done, click OK. “
Carat allows you to navigate the web using your keyboard. You can use the arrow keys to move around the document. The buttons and links in the document are automatically focused and you can click on it by pressing the Enter button. Some of the functions you can do with the keyboard include:
- Press Shift + Arrow to select text
- Hold down the option to move by word
- Press tab to go up
- Press Enter to click on the link or button.
High Contrast provides you with high-contrast color filters that make it easier to read digital text. Once installed, all colors on the webpage are reversed except for photos. You can easily turn this extension on / off by clicking on the ‘Browser Action’ icon in the toolbar. “You can make it easier to read text and view image details using high contrast extensions. It has filters to adjust color contrast, flip black and white, or remove colors altogether. You can also customize your settings via the website.” Here’s how to use it High contrast:
- “To turn on the extension, to the right of the address bar, click High Contrast.
- To adjust the image and text on the page, click High Contrast. Under the color scheme for ” [site], “Choose the color scheme you want.
- To close the extension, click High Contrast and then Disable. “
Just Read gives you a distraction-free environment where you can enjoy your online reading. It lets you remove distracting elements like ads, popups, comments and more. To further optimize your reading experience, you can customize your theme or use the default white and dark themes. The premium version of this extension offers more features including: save just read pages permanently, share just read pages with others, link directly to sections in web pages, add comment and highlighting capabilities, add text gradient to improve readability and much more.
Another great Chrome accessibility extension to use, especially for students with dyslexia and learning disabilities. Read Allows Draw on Text to Speech technology to convert text from web pages to audio version. It supports more than 40 languages and works on various websites. The extension lets you choose from a number of text-to-speech sounds. You can read aloud on Google Docs, PDFs, Amazon Kindle, Google Play Books, EPUB and more.
If you have vision problems and can’t support the bright blue light coming from your device’s screen, Dark Reader is definitely a great accessibility extension to try. I bet you already know what it does. It applies a dark theme to the website. Dark Reader ‘inverts bright colors that make high contrast and easy to read at night’. It also enables you to control the degree of brightness, contrast, font settings and sepia filters on your page.
Another great screen tinting extension to help reduce eye fatigue when interacting with your digital devices. Screen Shader applies a soothing orange hue to your Chrome that can help you browse the web without eye strain. The extension works on a variety of platforms, including YouTube, Facebook, Reddit and more. It is also supported on major operating systems such as Mac, Windows and Chrome OS.
EquatIO enables students to easily type or manipulate complex mathematical equations, formulas and quizzes. It offers both text-to-speech and voice dictation capabilities. Other features they provide include: handwriting recognition, predictive text (guess what you’re typing), creating digital math quizzes, chemistry formula predictions and more. QuatIO works on a variety of devices, including Google Docs, Forms, Slides, Sheets and Drawings.