Using the Reading Zones Feature

DocuSign is committed to providing our high quality solution in a manner that is accessible to all individuals, regardless of their abilities. To help meet this goal, DocuSign has incorporated accessibility support into the signing experience.

The DocuSign reading zones feature and signing experience accessibility has been developed with the goal of moving towards meeting U.S. Government Section 508 and WCAG Level AA standards and guidelines.

Reading zones and accessibility support have been tested with the JAWS (Job Access With Speech), NVDA (NonVisual Desktop Access), ChromeVox, VoiceOver with Safari, and Dragon Speak to Text screen readers, but should work with other assistive technology.

Important: The reading zones feature and accessibility support is available to all DocuSign plans, but must be enabled for your account and your account must use the latest version of the DocuSign signing experience. Visit our Contact Support web page for contact options to reach Customer Support.

How it Works

DocuSign’s reading zones feature and accessibility support provides people with disabilities the flexibility of signing documents online. The feature works with assistive technology, such as screen readers, to provide an audio version of the documents in an envelope and the DocuSign tags.

With accessibility support, DocuSign parses all the text and DocuSign tags for the documents. Tags are sorted and information provided based on their positions compared to text line. For example, if a tag is placed halfway through a line, the tag information will be read after the line. In general, text and tags are ordered from the top - left of a page to the bottom - right of the page.

Optionally, senders can specify the order in which information about document text and DocuSign tags is provided to the signer. The order of reading is set by creating numbered reading zones on envelope documents while adding tags in the Classic DocuSign Experience web application. The reading zone number sets the order in which the document text and DocuSign tags are presented to the signers.

Text and tags outside of the reading zones are parsed normally and presented to signers based on their position relative to the reading zones. For example, if the text or tag's top left corner is above or to the left of the lower right corner of the next reading zone, it is presented before the reading zone.

For the best signing experience, DocuSign recommends that you create separate reading zones for text and DocuSign tags and that each reading zone only has one DocuSign tag. DocuSign also recommends testing your reading zones before sending to an actual signer.

When the recipient opens the envelope and they have assistive technology installed, the recipient is asked if they want to use assistive technology during signing. Depending on the assistive technology, the recipient can use the keyboard commands to move through reading zones text, and DocuSign tags. In cases where there is text in the same reading zone as a DocuSign tag, the text is read first (even when the text appears after the tag) and then the tag is read. There is a cue associated with tags that need the recipient to enter information. The cue uses the information entered in the DocuSign tag Label property.

Example: The diagrams below show two documents with reading zones and DocuSign tags added to the document. In the diagrams, the blue outlined areas represent reading zones, with the reading zone number adjacent to the zone, and the yellow boxes are DocuSign tags.

Example 1 Example 2

In Example 1, the reading order is reading zones 1 and 2, then text adjacent to reading zone 2, then reading zones 3 through 6, and finally the text at the bottom of the page. In reading zones 2, 4, and 6 the text in the reading zone is read and then the tag Label is read and a cue for the expected entry type is given.

In Example 2, the reading order is reading zones 1 through 6 as the signer moves through the document. In reading zones 3 and 5, only the DocuSign tag Label information is read. In reading zone 6, the text is read first and then the tag Label information is read.

Accessibility Options

Sending an Envelope with Reading Zones

Creating a Template with Reading Zones

Exporting Reading Zone Information


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