Braille format conversions by ARACU

ARACU can convert English text to Braille format. We use Duxbury translation software and an Index Basic-D embosser to create single- or double-sided Braille.

If you are an Oxford student, you will need to be referred to us by the Disability Advisory Service (DAS) to use this service.

Unfortunately, we are not able to provide maths or music Braille through this service. Please contact us for advice on external transcription services you can use to convert this material.

The easiest and fastest way to have material converted to Braille is to send it to us as a Word or text document. If the material you need is not available electronically, send us a citation and we can scan, proofread and convert it into Braille. This will take longer, e.g. a 300-page book will take at the very least 5-6 weeks to convert.

When preparing a Word or text document, please make sure the layout is clear and consistent. To make conversion to Braille as easy as possible, please follow our advice below.

Preparing Braille-friendly documents and presentations

You will need to think about the information, rather than the visual impact of the document. The conversion software and Braille layout rely on the document using styles and headings in Word and a consistent layout in paragraphs.

PowerPoint presentations should be provided as text in a Word document. Make sure that you name each slide: before the slide title, type the number of the slide, e.g. 'Slide 1’.


When preparing text:

  • use a sans serif font (preferably Arial) in size 14
  • left align text
  • use bold, italics or underlined for emphasis (not all caps)
  • for lists use bullet points or numbered lists
  • check that web and email addresses are not split across two lines and are correctly formatted
  • use endnotes (rather than footnotes).


When structuring your document:

  • use headings to create a table of contents
  • remove page breaks and use a section break for a new chapter
  • use Word’s ‘show/hide paragraph marks’ function to remove any unnecessary line or paragraph breaks
  • use columns or tables to create spaces (rather than ‘tab’)
  • divide large files into smaller files to make them easier to manage
  • put page numbers in square brackets at the top of each page.


Information should be text-based rather than graphical.

Change all background colour to ‘none’ or ‘fill’, and do not use borders or shading.

Remove any images. If they are important, replace them with text descriptions.

For charts and graphs, you can request a tactile diagram.