JAWS Scripts For Adobe Connect
Last Revised April, 2019
This document describes the scripts for Adobe Connect and provides tips for
using this application with JAWS.
This document can be opened from within Adobe Connect via a double press
of JAWSKey+F1 (or Insert+F1).
This document is laid out for easy navigation using JAWS HTML heading
navigation commands: h will move through all headings,
2 through major sections, and 3 and 4
through any subsections or subsubsections.
Table of Contents
There are no known system requirements for these scripts beyond those for Adobe Connect itself.
The minimum JAWS version supported is 14.0.
JAWS versions older than 17.0 have not been carefully tested with these scripts.
The scripts have been tested against the following Adobe Connect Addin versions, most recent first:
To install these scripts on a new system:
- Load JAWS if this has not already been done. This will require
administrative privileges on the computer.
- Run JAWS as the user for whom the scripts are to be installed.
This and the following steps must be performed for each user of the computer
who will be using JAWS with these scripts.
- Run the script installer and follow its instructions.
- To verify successful installation, type Ins+Q from
within Adobe Connect. Part of the JAWS spoken response should be a revision number. If
you do not hear a revision number, the scripts are not correctly loaded.
In the below feature list, some keystrokes are key sequences rather than key combinations. All of these sequences begin with a "command"
key, by default the left bracket ([). The initial command key will be called "Command" in this document.
The scripts provide the following general keystrokes and features in addition to those provided by Adobe Connect:
- Some fields, notably tree controls such as the Attendees participant list, read more accurately.
- Alt+Tabbing into Adobe Connect should announce the newly focused control instead of saying nothing.
- The standard JAWS Ins+B command for reading the current screen in logical order reads most if
not all content.
- ` and Shift+` move focus forward and backward among available controls regardless of
which pod is active. This can be useful for reaching controls that fall outside of Adobe Connect's tab order.
Caveat: The order of controls for these commands may not match application tab order.
- Command s reads the displayed connection status information. Typing this command twice
quickly first toggles whether connection status details are displayed. Connection status details include
latency and bandwidth currently being used in both directions.
Note the following:
- When toggling details on, it may be necessary to type this command again after a second or two to read the
newly displayed information, as Adobe Connect may take a moment to measure before showing numbers.
- Toggling details on and off may move focus to the Connection Status button.
If this is inconvenient and you need to watch the connection status over time, just leave details toggled on
and type Command s once now and then as needed.
- Typing Insert+F1 twice quickly brings up the script documentation.
The scripts also provide the following features specific to chat pods:
- When focus is in the input edit box for a chat, JAWS announces the name of the chat, which indicates who
will receive your messages. This will be "Everyone" in most cases but can change if a private chat is
- Normal announcements during editing are provided, such as when backspacing, deleting, and moving through
the edit text by character and word. The support is slow and may not work properly on rapid movement, such as
- Alt with numbers read recent chats: Alt+1 reads the most recent, Alt+2 the next most recent, etc.
Typing the Command key followed by a number is equivalent to typing the combination Alt with the same number; e.g., Command 1 reads the most recent message.
Reversing the history text in a chat pod does not change the order of messages for these commands.
- Alt with left and right arrows, Home, and End move among chats and keep
track of position. Alt+NumPad5 (or Alt+Enter for keyboards without a number pad) repeats the latest chat read in this fashion with its position and
the number of chat messages available. Pressing this key combination twice quickly will spell the current chat message.
There is an alternate interface that reduces the need to hold down Alt: Press the Command key followed by any number of keys in the row from h through the semicolon. From left to right on a
standard English keyboard, h moves to and reads the first message, j the previous message, k repeats the last spoken message and spells it on a quick double tap, l moves to and reads
the next message, and the semicolon moves to and reads the most recent message.
Again, reversing chat history messages should not alter the behavior of these commands.
- In case JAWS' idea of message reversal gets out of sync, Command r reverses message order
manually for the above Alt message reading commands in the current chat.
- Some popular emoticons are spoken descriptively.
- F4 or Command t announces who, if anyone, is currently typing a message into the currently shown chat.
Typing either of these commands twice quickly will spell this information.
- By default, the following occur automatically at appropriate times, though they may be individually
toggled in Quick Settings:
- Incoming messages in the currently active chat speak on arrival, regardless of which pod is in focus.
Messages you send out will also speak when they arrive in the message history window.
- JAWS will speak the name of whoever is typing a message when this changes.
- A typing sound will play while anyone is typing a message (not including yourself).
Most Adobe Connect instances include an application menu bar. Use Ctrl+Space, not the
Alt key, to activate it.
Some Adobe Connect instances, such as those used simply to play back a pre-recorded
event, may not have an application menu.
Adobe Connect provides much help material, including a thorough guide to its keyboard shortcuts. To access
Adobe Connect help, type Ctrl+Space for Adobe Connect's Application menu, then arrow left or right
to reach the Help menu, and open it with a Down arrow.
Of course, this only works in Adobe Connect instances with an application menu bar on screen.
At this writing (September 6, 2016),
the "Keyboard Shortcuts" menu item actually launches the
Adobe Connect Accessibility Features web page
in the default browser.
Adobe Connect screens are made up of "pods" (think of them like panes). More than one pod can be visible at
once. Move among pods with Ctrl+F6. As a pod takes focus, JAWS should announce the pod's name.
Example pods that may appear include
There can also be video, share, poll, and notes pods.
- Contains a treeView of attendees, organized into hosts, presenters, and participants.
If you need to raise your hand to ask a question or speak, do it in this pod with Ctrl+E..
This pod also contains a tab control allowing a switch to a view that sorts attendees by status. Switch tabs
by tabbing to the tab control, arrowing left or right to the desired tab, and pressing Space to
select/activate the tab.
- There is one chat pod, but it may contain several separate chats, only one being displayed at a time.
There will generally be one public chat and may be one or more private chats in the pod.
Ctrl+Shift+O will jump to
whichever chat last produced an alert.
Some pods have pod-specific menus. To open the menu for the active pod, type Ctrl+F8.
Some controls may not appear, or at certain times may not appear, in Adobe Connect tab order. The scripts
provide a means of navigating forward and backward through focusable controls, regardless of tab order, via
the grave accent (`) key: Typing this key by itself moves focus to the next focusable control,
while typing it with a Shift key moves to the previous focusable control. Both will cycle around to
the first or last control, as appropriate, when encountering the end of the available controls. These commands
thus function much like Tab and Shift+Tab but are not restricted to controls in the
Be aware, though, that the order of controls using these commands may not match the order of controls in the
application's native tab order.
Use the chat message reading and navigation commands described under
Script Features In Brief to read chat messages.
When editing or reviewing a chat message while typing it, avoid moving rapidly with arrows, as this is
currently likely to result in strange behavior.
To start a private chat with a meeting participant:
- Use Ctrl+F6 to navigate to the Attendees pod.
- Tab to the tree of attendees, then use arrows to locate the attendee of interest.
- Press Enter to open a menu of options for the selected attendee.
- Locate "Start Private Chat" in this menu and press Space. (Enter does not work
- Move focus to the Chat pod's input edit box. JAWS should say the name of the attendee you will be
addressing. Ins+Tab will verify this. Any messages typed at this point will go to that person and
not to everyone.
- To switch between open chats, Tab past the Send button and press Space on the button
for the chat you wish to activate.
Issues shown in this section may be fixed in future script and/or
application revisions but are not addressed as of this writing.
At this writing, these scripts only work with the external addin, AdobeConnectAddin.exe. They will not
currently work when Adobe Connect resides within a browser window.
To make a meeting launch using the external addin, add ?launcher=true to the end of the meeting's
Reversing message history while in a private chat reverses the main "Everyone" chat but not the private one.
This will confuse the scripts and require you to type Command r in the main chat to rectify
message order for the Alt message reading commands.
Switching among chats in one Adobe Connect instance will not cause announcement of missed messages and will
cause the position for Alt+arrow chat reading commands to be wrong.
The Share pod provides accessible text but is not yet scripted and is not easy to read outside of a browser
and the JAWS virtual view.
Share pods without shared content display the message "Nothing is being shared," but this message is not
reachable via standard JAWS means either.
Chat messages containing multiple lines may read oddly because there is no separation in the MSAA text between
This message is
is likely to read via JAWS as
two lines long.
This message istwo lines long.
This cannot be fixed via scripting.
Reversing message text in a chat pod may cause the first and second messages to merge and leave a blank line
as the first message. This is due to an anomaly in Adobe Connect's MSAA formatting for chat history.
Restarting JAWS while chat history text is reversed will cause messages to be accessed by Alt chat
reading commands in the reverse order from that intended. There may be other cases for which the reversal
status of history messages is not detected correctly.
Use Command r in such circumstances to reverse JAWS' concept of message order.