Use a screen reader to insert a hyperlink in Word 2016

In Word 2016, you can use the keyboard and a screen reader to create hyperlinks in your document. And Word offers a lot of different options for linking: you can link to a file, web page, or blank email message. Or, you can link from one location to another in the current document.

Note: The procedures in this topic are documented using Narrator and JAWS. For information about how to work with a specific screen reader, contact your assistive technology (AT) manufacturer.

Note: This topic assumes that JAWS users have turned off the Virtual Ribbon Menu feature.

In this topic

Create an automatic hyperlink

Word can make a web address into a hyperlink automatically. Type a web address (URL) like www.contoso.com or an email address like someone@example.com, and then press the Spacebar or Enter. Word changes the text to a hyperlink.

If you want to remove it, see Remove a hyperlink.

Link to a file, web page, or blank email message

You can create hyperlinks to a file, a web page, or an email message.

Link to a file

  1. Type the link text that you want to appear in the document.

    Tip: Link text should be meaningful, and give the reader good information about the link destination. For example, if linking to a file, use the title of the document as link text. Don't use the file name.

  2. In the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, press Alt+X to move to the File or Existing Web Page option.

  3. Do one of the following

    • To browse for the file on your computer, press Alt+U to access the Current Folder option , and then use the Down Arrow key to select a file.

    • To browse for a file on the web, press Alt+B to open Browsed pages, and then use the Down Arrow key to select a previously visited web location.

    • To browse for a recently used file, press Alt+R to open Recent Files, and then use the Down Arrow key to select a file.

  4. Press Enter to select a file, and then copy the file address to the Address box.

  5. Press the Tab key until you reach the OK button, and then select it.

    Word inserts the hyperlink in your document.

Link to a web page

  • To link to a web page, place the cursor where you want the link in your document .

  • Press Alt+N, I to open the Insert Hyperlink dialog box. Focus lands on the Address box.

  • Type the web address of the destination site, and then press Alt+t to enter the link text that displays in your document.

  • Enter the title of the web page or a descriptive phrase in the Text to display box.

    Tip: Link text should describe the link destination. For example, the title of a destination web page makes good link text. When people link to that page, screen readers read the title of the page first. This confirms the destination and makes the link a more accessible experience.

  • Press the Tab key until you reach the OK button, and select it.

    Word enters the link in the document.

Link to a new email message

Sometimes you want to make it possible for people to send email while they read your document. For example, you might want people to contact your office for more information, or you might be collecting feedback about a new idea you proposed. Word lets you add a link to an email message where you want it in your document.

  • To add a link in your document that opens a new email message, press Alt+M to open the email message dialog. Focus changes to the Email address box, ready for you to edit.

  • Type the email address, and then press the Tab key to go to the Subject box.

  • Type the subject of the email in the Subject box, and then press the Tab key.

  • Tab again to the OK button and select it. This places a link in your document that resembles this: mailto: someone@contoso.com.

  • To use the link to send email, select the link in the document to open the message. Focus moves to the body of the new email, ready to enter the message.

Link to another location in the current document

To link to another location in the current document, you have to first create a bookmark that serves as the link destination. Then, you insert a link to the bookmark.

Create a bookmark

Follow these steps to create a bookmark in your document:

  1. To bookmark the destination location, select that location. You can use a heading, select text, or select an image as the destination.

  2. To open the Bookmark dialog, press Alt+N, K. Focus moves to the Bookmark name box.

  3. Type a name for the bookmark.

    Important: Bookmark names must begin with a letter. They can contain only letters, numbers, and the underscore symbol—for example, Dev_Report_2.

  4. To add the bookmark name for Word to use, press Alt+A.

    This closes the Bookmark dialog box.

Insert a link to the bookmark

  1. In the document, move to the place where you want the link to appear.

  2. Open the Insert Hyperlink dialog box by pressing Alt+N, I.

  3. In the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, press Alt+A to select the Places in this document option.

  4. Use the Down Arrow key to browse the list of bookmarks for this document, and press Enter to select a bookmark.

  5. Press the Tab key until you reach the OK button, and then select it.

    Word inserts a hyperlink to your bookmark destination.

Remove a hyperlink

Sometimes you change your mind. Here's how to remove a hyperlink from a document:

  1. Open the document, and then select the hyperlinked text or image.

  2. To open the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, press Alt+N, I.

  3. To remove the selected hyperlink, press Alt+R. The Insert Hyperlink dialog box closes, and the hyperlink is removed from the selected text or image. The text or image itself remains intact.

Tip: If you don't want your typed web or email address to be a hyperlink, immediately after pressing the Spacebar or Enter, undo the last action by pressing Ctrl+Z. If you press Ctrl+Z a second time, Word deletes the text completely.

More information

Get help for using a screen reader with Word 2016

Use a screen reader to apply heading and paragraph styles in Word 2016

Keyboard shortcuts for Microsoft Word 2016 for Windows

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