Loyola University Maryland

Accessibility at Loyola

Bulleted & Numbered Lists

Too much text can discourage reading. Utilize bulleted and numbered lists to present key concepts for a clear understanding of important points: 

  • Allows a writer to present key terms and concepts while avoiding blocks of text. 
  • Organizes information into meaningful chunks. 
  • Invites a break in the document flow, encouraging readers to stick with the content. 
  • Prevents burnout or fatigue that results from the untangling of dense or complex paragraphs.
  • Numbered lists encourage sequencing necessary for conveying processes and procedures.

These formatting options allow a visual reader the ability to easily scan a document for lists. It also allows users of assistive technology to identify lists in a document, navigate to them, and gain information regarding hierarchies, but only when lists are created correctly. 

Do

  • Use your software’s built-in list function. 
  • Use a bulleted list to show a list of related items. 
  • Use a numbered list to show steps in a process or the number of part in a whole. 
  • Use a small amount of space between each line. Look for this “space after paragraph” option in your word processing and presentation software. This function is available in the Home “ribbon” on all Microsoft software, and is part of the editor in both Moodle and SiteCore:

Screenshot of the List Tools in Microsoft Office Suite

Don’t

Create lists manually by simply inserting numbers, characters, images or other symbols before the list items. 

For example: 
- list item 1 
- list item 2 
- list item 3

Adaptive technologies cannot identify or convey the existence of a list when created this way.  

Adapted from https://accessibility.umn.edu/core-skills/bulleted-numbered-lists