Internet Explorer - improving accessibility


This guide shows you how to customise Internet Explorer to meet your accessibility requirements.  The changes you make to font, font size and colours will be applied to all web pages you visit.  You can change any or all of these options together or independently. 

Regardless of those settings, you can also temporarily change the magnification of any individual web page at any time.

Switch off pre-set fonts and colours

To customise your view of web pages using Internet Explorer , first you must switch off default settings for fonts and colours.

To switch off pre-set fonts and colours:

1. From the toolbar near the top of the Internet Explorer window click Tools | Internet Options. The Internet Options dialog box opens

Tools icon

2. On the General tab, in the lower right corner click Accessibility. The Accessibility dialog box opens

Internet Options

3. Tick each of the first three boxes (or as many as you want to customise)  


4. Click OK. This will change colours, font styles and sizes to basic ones which you can then customise by following the steps below

Changing the font

Once you've switched off pre-set fonts, you can customise them to the font of your choice.

To change the fonts displayed on web pages:

1. Click Tools | Internet Options. The Internet Options dialog box opens

2. On the General tab, click Fonts. The Fonts dialog box opens

 Internet Options - Fonts

Note: Choose the plain text font you prefer. A preview of the font change (using the word 'Latin') is shown near the bottom of the dialogue box

3. Click OK.  Web page text will be changed to the font you've chosen

Changing the font size

Once you've switched off pre-set font size, you can select the default set of font sizes that best meets your needs.

To change the font sizes on a web page:

1. Click Page | Text Size

Text Size

2. Select your preferred font size from: Largest; Larger; Medium; Smaller; Smallest 

Changing colours

You can change the colours of the fonts, background and hyperlinks to those you are most comfortable with.

To change web page colours:

1. Click Tools | Internet Options. The Internet Options dialog box opens

2. On the General tab click Colors. The Colors dialog box opens


3. If necessary, click to untick the Use Windows colors box

4. Click each of the colour boxes in turn to select your preferred colour for the option: Text; Background; Visited (for hyperlinks you have already clicked on); Unvisited (for hyperlinks you have not used)


5. If you want links to temporarily change colour as you move the mouse pointer over them, in the upper left corner of the Colours dialogue box tick the box for Use hover color.  Then, if required, click on the Hover colour box to change it

6. When you have customised each of the colour box options as desired, select OK. The colours on the webpage change to those you have chosen

Disabling images

You can disable an image and view only its alternative text instead.

To disable images:

1. Click Tools | Internet Options. The Internet Options dialogue box opens

2. Select the Advanced tab

3. Use the scroll bar on the right to move to the Multimedia section

4. Untick the Show Pictures box

Show pictures

5. Select OKNote: If images are not disabled, you may need to refresh your page either by pressing F5 on your keyboard or by clicking the Refresh button in the toolbar at the top of the browser window

Magnifying a web page

Regardless of font size settings, you can temporarily increase or decrease the magnification of any individual web page at any time.

To change the magnification of a web page:

Hold down CTRL and press + to increase or CTRL and - to decrease font size.  (Pressing CTRL and moving the mouse wheel has the same effect.)


From the toolbar at the bottom of the browser window select the Zoom drop down arrow. A drop down menu will appear


Note: You may select your own custom size by clicking Custom... and then entering your preferred size in the Percentage zoom field in the pop up window

Custom zoom