Use a screen reader to create a chart on a form in Access desktop databases

Use a screen reader to create a chart on a form in Access desktop databases

Read out loud symbol with the label Screen reader content. This topic is about using a screen reader with Office

This article is for people with visual impairments who use a screen reader program with the Office products and is part of the Office Accessibility content set. For more general help, see Office Support home.

Use Access with your keyboard and a screen reader to create a pie, column, or line chart on a form. We have tested it with Narrator, JAWS, and NVDA, but it might work with other screen readers as long as they follow common accessibility standards and techniques. You'll also learn how to format, resize, or move a chart.

You can add a chart to a form to visualize your data. You can bind the chart to a table or query and customize the chart with a variety of properties.

To learn more about charts and how to decide which chart you should create, go to the Choose the best chart type for your needs section in Create a chart on a form or report.

Notes: 

In this topic

Create a chart

To successfully create a chart in Access, bind the chart to a data source, such as a table or query, and map fields to the chart dimensions.

  1. Navigate to the form on which you want to create the chart, and press Shift+F10. The context menu opens. Press D to open the form in the Design View.

  2. To select a chart type, press Alt+J, D, H, 1. The chart menu opens. Do one of the following:

    • To create a pie chart, press P.

    • To create a column chart, press C.

    • To create a line chart, press L.

  3. Press Enter. A placeholder chart is inserted on the form. The Chart Settings pane opens.

  4. To move the focus to the Chart Settings pane, press F6 until you hear an item in the pane. You may need to ask a colleague to help you identify the pane.

  5. If necessary, to move the focus to the Data tab, press Shift+Tab until you hear the current tab. Then press the Right arrow key until you hear: "Data tab." The tab properties are displayed.

  6. To select or change the data source type for the chart, press the Tab key until you hear "Data source," followed by the current source type, for example "Table." To change the data source type, press the Left or Right arrow key until you hear the source type you want.

  7. Press the Tab key once. You hear the name of the current data source, followed by "Combo box." If there was no data source selected, you hear: "Combo box." To select or change the data source, press the Down arrow key until you hear the source you want, and press Enter.

    By default, the sample diagram is replaced with a live chart that uses the first two fields in the data source as the Axis (Category) and Values (Y axis) dimensions. Often the first column in a table is a primary key, and you may not want to use that as a dimension in a chart.

  8. To create a chart, you need to select at least two fields in the Axis (Category), Legend (Series), and Values (Y Axis) options. To move to an option, press the Tab key until you hear the option you want, for example "Axis, category." Press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear the field you want. If the field is presented as a checkbox, press Spacebar to select it. If the field is a radio button, it is selected automatically as you move on it. For more information on each option and what they do to the chart, go to the Data settings section, step 3, in Create a chart on a form or report.

Format your chart

You can format the chart and its various elements. You can also format individual data series, which are a set of values in a column, line, or pie slice that correspond to the chart legend. The formatting options depend on the chart type.

For detailed information on the data series properties you can format, go to the Format settings section, step 3, in Create a chart on a form or report.

Format a pie chart

You can modify the properties of a pie chart using the Property Sheet pane. You may need to ask a colleague to help you select the properties you want to modify in step 8.

  1. Open the form with the chart in the Design view as instructed in Create a chart.

  2. Press F6 until you hear "Workspace," followed by the name of the form.

  3. To move the focus to the chart, press the Tab key until you hear the chart number, for example "Chart 19, collapsed."

  4. Press F4 to open the Property Sheet pane.

  5. Press F6 once. The focus moves to a property row in the Property Sheet pane. You hear the row number, followed by the property cell contents.

  6. In the Property Sheet pane, the settings affecting the chart appearance are usually in the Format tab. To navigate to and select a tab, press the Tab key until you hear the currently selected tab item, for example, "Data tab item, selected." Press the Left or Right arrow key until you hear: "Format tab item." The properties of the Format tab are displayed.

    Tip: If you want to inspect all available chart properties, select the All tab.

  7. To move the focus to the list of properties in the selected tab, press the Tab key once.

  8. To browse the properties of the selected tab, press the Up or Down arrow key. To expand submenus, press Alt+Down arrow key. To select an item in a submenu, press the Up or Down arrow key until you hear the option you want, and press Enter to select it. To modify text fields, type a new value in the field.

  9. To close the Property Sheet pane, press F4.

Format a column or line chart

  1. Open the form with the chart in the Design view as instructed in Create a chart.

  2. Press F6 until you hear "Workspace," followed by the name of the form.

  3. To move the focus to the chart, press the Tab key until you hear the chart number, for example "Chart 19, collapsed."

  4. To move the focus to the Chart Settings pane, press F6 until you hear an item in the pane. You may need to ask a colleague to help you identify the pane.

  5. To select the Format tab, press Shift+Tab until you hear the current tab, and then press the Right arrow key until you hear: "Format tab."

  6. To move the focus to the list of properties in the Format tab, press the Tab key once.

  7. To move in the Format tab, press the SR key+Right or Left arrow key. To expand menus, press Alt+Down arrow key. To browse a menu, press the Up or Down arrow key. To select an option, press Spacebar or Enter. To modify text fields, type a new value in the field.

Resize a chart

  1. Open the form with the chart in the Design view as instructed in Create a chart.

  2. Press F6 until you hear "Workspace," followed by the name of the form.

  3. To move the focus to the chart, press the Tab key until you hear the chart number, for example "Chart 19, collapsed."

  4. Press Shift+Arrow keys to resize the chart. You may need a colleague to help you to identify suitable dimensions for the chart.

Move a chart

  1. Open the form with the chart in the Design view as instructed in Create a chart.

  2. Press F6 until you hear "Workspace," followed by the name of the form.

  3. To move the focus to the chart, press the Tab key until you hear the chart number, for example "Chart 19, collapsed."

  4. Use the arrow keys to move the chart. You may need a colleague to help you to identify a suitable position for the chart.

Link a chart to the data on a form or report

To make a chart interact with the data on a form or report, bind the chart to the same data source as the form or report. Then you can set a matching field value for the Link Child Fields and Link Master Fields data properties of the chart.

  1. Create a form or report bound to a data source. For detailed instructions, go to Use a screen reader to create a form in Access desktop databases or Use a screen reader to create a report in Access desktop databases.

  2. In the form or report, add a chart as instructed in Create a chart. When selecting the data source, select the same source as in the form or report.

  3. Open the form or report in the Design View as instructed in Create a chart.

  4. To move the focus to the chart, press the Tab key until you hear the chart number, for example "Chart 19, collapsed."

  5. Press F4 to open the Property Sheet pane.

  6. Press F6 once. The focus moves to a property row in the Property Sheet pane. You hear the row number, followed by the property cell contents.

  7. To navigate to and select the Data tab, press the Tab key until you hear the currently selected tab item, for example, "Format tab item, selected." Press the Left or Right arrow key until you hear: "Data tab item." The properties of the Data tab are displayed.

  8. Ask a colleague to help you move the focus to either the Link Child Fields or Link Master Fields property box.

  9. In the selected property box, press Shift+F10 to open the context menu. To open the Subform Field Linker dialog box, press B.

  10. The Subform Field Linker dialog box contains separate menus for the master and child fields. To move in the dialog box, press the SR key+Right or Left arrow key. To expand the list of master or child fields, press Alt+Down arrow key. To browse a list, press the Down arrow key. To select a field that you want to link to, press Enter. You may need to ask a colleague to help you navigate the dialog box.

    Tip: If you are not sure which field to use, press the SR key+Right arrow key until you reach the Suggest button, and press Enter to select it. Access inserts the recommended field in the selected property box.

  11. Save the form or report.

  12. Verify that the chart works as expected in either the Form or Report view. For example, filter the form or report by a category field to update the chart. You may need to ask a colleague to help you verify the chart.

See also

Use a screen reader to create tables in Access desktop databases

Use a screen reader to create a query in Access desktop databases

Use a screen reader to create a form in Access desktop databases

Use a screen reader to export an Access table to an Excel workbook

Use a screen reader to bring Excel data to Access desktop databases

Keyboard shortcuts for Access

Use a screen reader to explore and navigate Access

Technical support for customers with disabilities

Microsoft wants to provide the best possible experience for all our customers. If you have a disability or questions related to accessibility, please contact the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk for technical assistance. The Disability Answer Desk support team is trained in using many popular assistive technologies and can offer assistance in English, Spanish, French, and American Sign Language. Please go to the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk site to find out the contact details for your region.

If you are a government, commercial, or enterprise user, please contact the enterprise Disability Answer Desk.

Get support
Contact us
Expand your Office skills
Explore training

Was this information helpful?

Thank you for your feedback!

Thank you for your feedback! It sounds like it might be helpful to connect you to one of our Office support agents.

×