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Screen Magnifiers, Zooming and Color Contrast Tips

This topic provides some basic advice for using CougarView with screen magnifiers, zooming functionality and color contrast functionality.

Screen magnifiers, zooming functionality and color contrast functionality are often used by people who have difficulties reading online. Difficulties can include low vision, color blindness, eye strain, or dyslexia. Screen magnifiers and zooming functionality are also used by individuals who have fine motor skills difficulty as they increase the target for selectable content (such as links, icons and form fields).

Magnifying vs. Zooming

There are a couple of ways you can increase the size of content in CougarView to improve readability:

  • Use the Preferences tool in CougarView to increase the system font size. This only increases the size of system fonts; it does not increase the size of icons and other graphics or user-created content.
  • Use an assistive technology or browser that supports zooming. This increases the magnification of the entire page. This option works well in CougarView.
  • Use a screen magnifier to magnify a portion of the page, such as the area around the cursor. Many users like screen magnifiers because they preserve the layout of the page, but allow you to focus on the content in a specific area.

Customizing Colors

Institutions, course designers, and course instructors can customize CougarView page colors and text font as desired. As a result, the readability of your CougarView courses depends a lot on your institution.

If you are having difficulty using CougarView because of the text and background colors used, we recommend that you use a screen magnifier or other assistive technology that allows you to invert or adjust the colors on a page.

Another popular option is to use a custom cascading style sheet (CSS). There are many free cascading style sheets available on the Internet. CSS works best in CougarView when background images are turned off, but normal images and icons are left unaltered. CougarView is a complex site with a number of different tools and page designs, as a result a fairly detailed style sheet is needed to display content effectively.


There are a number of settings in the Preferences tool that you may find improves the readability of CougarView.

Appearance and Accessibility Tab

  • Select a different Font Face and Font Size than the default if there is a font you prefer. You can use this option in combination with a screen magnifier or zooming.
  • If you disable style sheets to navigate D2L we recommend you select Show secondary windows as pop-ups; otherwise, some secondary pages may not be distinguishable from the main page.

Discussions Tab

  • Clear the Show the discussion topics list and Show the preview pane options to simplify the layout of discussion lists.
  • Select the Grid Style message list if you want to see only a list of messages in discussion lists and open messages to read their contents. This results in less text on discussion lists.
  • Some users also select Include original message text in replies so they do not have to move between discussion messages as frequently.

Email Tab

  • Some users select Include original message in email replies so they do not have to move between messages as frequently.
  • Clear the Show the Message Preview pane and Show the Folder List pane options to simplify the layout of your Inbox.


Getting Additional Support

If you are having difficulty using CougarView to complete your course work, consider seeking help from your instructor or the Center for Accommodation and Access. This office exists to help users learn new technology, seek special accommodations, and organize tutoring and other support.

Columbus State University is committed to providing accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities in a timely and effective manner. To request a reasonable accommodation, students must be registered with the Center for Accommodation and Access.

Accommodations will be made based on eligibility determined by the Center for Accommodation and Access. Services can be requested at any time during the semester by clicking on this link. Requesting services well in advance will help to ensure that resources are available when needed. Please contact a Joy Norman office at 706-507-8755 or