macOS High Sierra

Use accessibility features

Accessibility comes standard with a Mac. Whether you have difficulties with vision, hearing, or physical mobility, macOS includes a variety of features to help you work in alternative ways—and make your Mac even easier to use.

Use the built-in screen reader called VoiceOver

VoiceOver is the built-in screen reader that describes aloud what appears on your screen and speaks the text in documents, webpages, and windows. Using VoiceOver, you control your Mac with the keyboard or trackpad gestures. You can also connect a refreshable braille display to use with VoiceOver.

  • To turn VoiceOver on or off, press Command-F5 (or if your Mac has a Touch Bar, press and hold the Command key and quickly press Touch ID three times).

  • To customize VoiceOver using VoiceOver Utility, press Control-Option-F8 (when VoiceOver is on).

    Open VoiceOver Utility for me

  • To learn how to use VoiceOver, choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Accessibility, click VoiceOver, then click Open VoiceOver Training.

    Open the VoiceOver pane for me

For help with VoiceOver, choose Help > VoiceOver Help while VoiceOver Utility is open.

Zoom content on the screen

If items on the screen are too small, you can zoom in to make content larger and easier to see. You can zoom the entire screen or a portion of the screen.

Reduce motion on the screen

If motion on the screen is problematic, you can set an option to reduce motion when using certain features, such as Spaces, Notification Center, or the Dock.

  • To set the option to reduce motion, choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Accessibility, then click Display.

    Open the Display pane for me

Use a physical keyboard or an onscreen keyboard

To make it easier to press keys on a physical keyboard, you can turn on Sticky Keys and Slow Keys. Or use the onscreen Accessibility Keyboard to navigate macOS and use advanced typing features (such as typing suggestions) and bypass a physical keyboard altogether.

Move the pointer using the keyboard

If you have trouble using a mouse, you can turn on Mouse Keys, then use the keyboard or a numeric keypad to move the mouse pointer and press the mouse button.

Use dictation commands and text to speech