Using SCRIBE in Canvas

The Stanford Converter into Braille and E-Text (SCRIBE) tool is available in all Canvas courses. This self-serve document conversion tool transforms text and image-based files into a variety of output options including audio, Braille, or e-text formats. 

While students can convert files with the standalone SCRIBE tool, enabling SCRIBE within Canvas will provide a streamlined workflow for students who already make use of the tool. If you do not see SCRIBE in your Canvas course navigation, customize the navigation to enable SCRIBE so students can benefit. 

Steps to Convert Files

  1. Click SCRIBE from the left-hand course navigation.
  2. Select a course file from the drop-down menu.
    • Instructors and TAs will see unpublished files. Students will not see unpublished files. 
  3. Under Requested Conversion, select the desired conversion type.

  4. Make a selection for all conversion parameters.
  5. When ready, click Campus email. The conversion will be sent to the email address associated with the user's Canvas account.

SCRIBE Conversion Results

  • Email includes a link to the converted file.
  • Multiple conversion requests will be sent as individual emails (one per file).
  • Larger files will take longer to convert. Shorter files should only take minutes.  
    • If a large file conversion is not delivered after 5 hours of the original request, please contact
  • Links to conversion files expire after 7 days.
  • Emails will come from

Instructors: Scan Modules 

By default, SCRIBE scans Modules for course file links. Instructors can disable Scan Modules to allow SCRIBE to only scan and display files in the Files tool.

IMPORTANT: If Files is disabled, files will not be scanned. If Modules is disabled, SCRIBE will continue to scan unless “Scan Modules” is disabled.


Workaround for students to Convert files not in Canvas SCRIBE 

The Canvas SCRIBE integration can only scan Files and Modules. When the Files tool is hidden, embedded course file links not in Modules (Pages, Announcements, Assignments, Discussions, etc.) will not be listed to students in the SCRIBE tool.

Inaccessible files requiring conversion can be made by going directly to The SCRIBE site allows users to upload files directly from their computer.

Comments from the Office of Accessible Education

  • SCRIBE is a self-service, automated tool offered in addition to - not in lieu of - accommodations.
  • Students registered with the OAE may continue to request alternate format accommodations through OAE | CONNECT.
  • Instructors interested in creating accessible documents can start with resources specific to Microsoft Office and Adobe, available through Stanford Online Accessible Program (SOAP).
  • Visit for best practices, FAQs, an e-learning course, and more.
  • Have questions about accessibility? Contact the Office of Accessible Education.