| Reference | Downloads | Github

Builder: Accessibility for visually-impaired users

Hi there,

One of my students is visually impaired and uses VoiceOver, a built-in screen reader, to navigate his Mac. Given that our lab primarily uses PsychoPy to design experiments, I would love for him to be able to use this tool as well. He doesn’t know much Python, thus we started by testing out how well VoiceOver dealt with Builder. Unfortunately, we ran into many roadblocks. For example, when trying to navigate through options in the keyboard element window, VoiceOver was unable to “see” many of the options, skipping over them entirely.

I’m wondering if there are any other visually-impaired users on this board that may have had better success, by, e.g., changing settings, using a different OS, or using a different screen reader?


Hi Valerie,

Thank you for raising this issue. It is very useful to get user feedback on such problems, that might not otherwise come to the awareness of the majority of users and developers.

We are committed to making PsychoPy available to as many communities as possible, so, for example, there are underpinnings that allow its interface to be easily localised in different languages. Making it accessible to people with disabilities is also important.

Can you give some precise descriptions of the roadblocks you found (i.e. specific controls in specific dialogs)?

I just tried VoiceOver for the first time, and attempted to navigate the keyboard dialog. I was surprised by how comprehensively it worked, given that I doubt much specific attention has gone into it from the PsychoPy developers (i.e. I imagine much of this functionality is something that comes “for free”, just by specifying the order of controls correctly and by providing useful help tips for each control to help with interpreting its function).

However, I found that I could navigate through all of the controls in that dialog. I did need to use the left/right arrows consistently. Pushing the down arrow did indeed jump right over a bunch of controls, to go straight to the OK/Cancel buttons at the bottom of the dialog. Can you confirm that wasn’t the source of the problem?