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This page discusses accessibility issues in Audacity for visually- and motion-impaired users.

Keyboard shortcuts

A large number of keyboard shortcuts are available for those who cannot use a mouse, and for those who find it quicker to use the keyboard. These keyboard shortcuts are described throughout the manual, and in the Keyboard Shortcut Reference. They can be customized on the Keyboard page of the Preferences dialog.

Parts of Audacity which are not fully accessible using the keyboard include:

  • Time Tracks: These can control the speed of audio tracks in a very flexible manner.
  • Smart clips - the non-destructive resizing of clips.
  • Tools Toolbar: Only Selection Tool can be worked with using the keyboard.

Mac keyboard navigation

The following methods of keyboard navigation which are standard on Windows and Linux work differently on Mac.

  • Alt key navigation of menus and buttons is not supported by Apple. To access menus, hold Ctrl and press F2 then type the first few letters of the root menu item, then type the first few letters of the item required in that menu.
  • Tabbing in dialogs other than between text boxes and lists is off by default. Tabbing can be enabled by opening the System Keyboard Preferences, choose the "Keyboard Shortcuts" tab, then under "Full Keyboard Access", choose the radio button "All controls".

Screen readers

Large parts of Audacity are accessible to users of screen readers on Windows. Unfortunately, the accessibility on Mac is more limited, and on Linux it is even more limited. The accessibility on Windows and on Mac is outlined in the next two sections.

On Windows

On Windows Audacity is known to work well with these screen readers: Jaws, NVDA, and on Windows 10, Narrator. And there is a Guide to Audacity for users of these screen readers.

The following parts of Audacity are not accessible to users of screen readers on Windows:

On Mac

Advice The accessibility and usability of this version of Audacity is limited. It is hoped that future versions of Audacity will be more accessible for users of VoiceOver.