Alternate Text (or Alt Text) should be added to any images used in a page to provide a short (less than 125 characters) description of the meaning of the image. This means that users that cannot see the image can still get the important information that the image is meant to convey. 

If an image is for decoration purposes only and is not meant to convey any meaning or information, you can use alt=”” so that screen readers will skip the image entirely.

3 ways to add alt text

There are three ways to add images to Blackboard pages.  You an add your own images using the Create Image menu from the Build Content button, via the content editor, or from aMashup tool that allows you to search and add images directly from Flickr. All three methods allow the addition of alt text to describe the meaning of the images you want to add: 

1. Using the Create Image tool

When adding an image using this method, the alt text field appears below the buttons used to attach the file:

The ALT text field when adding an image

2. Add images from Flickr

When adding images from the Flickr mashup, alt text is automatically applied, so you don’t have to add this manually yourself!

The Hive Worcester

The Hive Worcester

User:WorcesterKevin
Added: 2/22/14  Taken: 2/9/13  Last Updated: 6/15/17 
Latitude: 52.19465  Longitude: -2.228636 
Tags: worcester, worcestershire, floods, nikon, the, hive 
License: All Rights Reserved  

3. Adding images with the Editor

When adding an image via the Blackboard editor, there is no alt text field to add your description!  In this tool, alt text must be added in the Image Description field instead:

Location of the Alt Text field when adding images

This is functionally the same, and does add the required text for screen readers. The Title field is optional.

If you don’t add any alt text and attempt to save the page, a warning popup will appear asking whether you are sure you are certain you do not want to add a description for the image:

Continue without adding Alt Text dialog warning

If  this message appears, click the Cancel button and check that your alternative text has been added correctly.