Re: Accessing text boxes in Microsoft Word

Quentin Christensen

Hi Pranav,

Firstly, the ideal solution here (even using Jaws to be honest), is to convince people not to use text boxes.

NVDA doesn't currently have a direct keystroke, it's something we could look into.  For now, though, there are still a couple of ways of reading text boxes currently:

If the text boxes are positioned "in line with text", they can be found within the text of the document.  Currently they are identified as "slash" though that's something we're working on.

Once you are in a text box (or picture or other object) you can press TAB to move between them.  You can add a text box into a document by pressing alt+n, x, enter then press escape once (so you are out of the text itself but the text box is still selected), then you can press TAB to move between the objects in the document (this wraps so if you press TAB on the last object in the document it will jump back to the first object).  Be sure to either delete the text box you added or not save changes to this document!

You can also use the accessibility checker, which is handy for finding things but I'll warn you it's not the most direct route:  In Word 2016 you can get to this from the "tell me what you want to do" edit box by pressing alt+q and typing "check", but from 2013 (or from 2016) you can press alt+f (file menu), then i (info tab), then i (inspect document) then down arrow to check accessibility.  This opens the check accessibility task pane but unfortunately puts the focus back in your document so you need to press F6.  This shows any accessibility issues, so if you down arrow through the details it will say "Warning" then "objects not inline", then "text box 2" (not sure why, they all seem to be called text box 2?).  Press enter on that text box and press SHIFT+F6 to jump back to your document with the text box selected (this works the same as the previous method of adding a new text box but without changing your document.  It is more cumbersome though, I'll not deny that!).

Kind regards


On Fri, Jul 22, 2016 at 10:26 AM, Pranav Lal <pranav.lal@...> wrote:
Hi all,

How do I access the contents of text boxes in Microsoft Word? In jaws, I could
get a list of objects in a word document and access them that way. NVDA as far
as I know does not support this yet. I need this at work because some of my job
related documents have text boxes in them.
At work, I am using Word 2013 but this query is Word version agnostic.

Quentin Christensen
Training Material Developer
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