Accessing Moodle Quizzes with NVDA

At UCEM we use both H5P and Moodle to create quizzes to engage our students. H5P quizzes are used within learning activities (formative) and Moodle quizzes are mainly used for grading purposes (summative) – at UCEM we call these Computer Marked Assessments (CMAs).

Testing our VLE for accessibility, we have also looked at various question types and their accessibility. However, with Moodle quizzes we faced the difficulty to get the question text read as tabbing through the page would take you directly to the answer options or blank (the active element where user is expected to interact with the page) without reading the question text. This is a common problem people who are not screenreader users will face because they do not know the intricate details of how screenreaders are interacting with the content.

We particularly struggled to get drag and drop question type and selection list question type to work with the screenreader. They allow keyboard only access but once the screenreader is activated some of the keys are used by the screenreader and they no longer work to activate the question interactivity.

For example, according to the Moodle Documentation on Drag and Drop Question Type using <tab> key will move between the blanks and the <space> key will cycle around the possible choices for each blank. However, after activating the NVDA screenreader these key strokes did not work as previously.

  • Moodle 3.7 adaptable theme
  • NVDA 2019.2.1
  • Google Chrome version 79.0.3945.117, Firefox version 72.0.1
screen shot of an example Moodle drag and drop question
Drag and drop question type

When the NVDA screenreader was activated the key combination worked were: <tab> to move between blanks, ALT + Down to activate answers and once activated you could use Up and Down arrows to go from one option to another. This is how NVDA will read this to the user (my key strokes are shown in square brackets.

[Tab] button Flag this question for future reference
[Down Arrow] heading level 4 Question text
[Down Arrow] Complete the following sequence.
[Down Arrow] A, B,  blank, D,  blank
[Down Arrow] CXZEFH
[Tab] Check button
[Shift+Tab] blank
[Shift+Tab] blank
[ALT+Down Arrow repeatedly allows the options for first blank each to be selected intern but does not read this to the user]

However, while each option was selected for the blank, it did not read out the option I had selected. I assumed answer option I have selected would be read out to me. Perhaps there is another keystroke for that which as non screenreader users I am not aware of…