SensusAccess

What is SensusAccess?

SensusAccess is a web-based, self-service application for converting documents into a range of alternate media and accessible formats. The service is free and available 24/7 to CSU-Global students, faculty, staff, and alumni. SensusAccess can convert most document types (like PDF and Word) into the following formats:

  • MP3 audio files
  • Structured audio books in DAISY and EPUB/Media Overlay format
  • E-books (Digital Large-Print)
  • Tagged PDF, DOC, DOCX, Word XML, XLS, XLSX, CVS, text, RTF, and HTML
  • Digital Braille books

Please see input/output options available in SensusAccess below.

What kinds of input/output options are available in SensusAccess?

The SensusAccess Conversion Matrix shows which kinds of conversion input/output options are available. Here you will see this information laid out in terms of input format and output options.

  • Input Format DOC can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • DAISY Full Text/Full Audio and DAISY Text Only
    • Audio file in MP3 format
    • Tagged PDF
    • Braille in TXT and PEF format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format DOCX can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • DAISY Full Text/Full Audio and DAISY Text Only
    • Audio file in MP3 format
    • Tagged PDF
    • Braille in TXT and PEF format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format PDF can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • Tagged PDF, DOC, DOCX, CSV, XLS, XLSX, RTF, XML and HTM
    • Audio file in MP3 format. Asian languages not supported
    • Braille in TXT and PEF format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format TXT and ASC can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • Audio file in MP3 format. Asian languages not supported
    • Braille in TXT and PEF format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format XML can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • DAISY Full Text/Full Audio and DAISY Text Only
    • Audio file in MP3 format. Asian languages not supported
    • Braille in TXT and PEF format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format HTM and HTML can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • Audio file in MP3 format
    • Braille in HTML format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format RTF can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • DAISY Full Text/Full Audio and DAISY Text Only
    • Audio file in MP3 format
    • Tagged PDF
    • Braille in TXT and PEF format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format TIFF, GIF, JPG, BMP, PCX, DCX, J2K, JP2, JPX, and DJV can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB, EPUB3 with Media Overlay and MOBI format
    • Audio file in MP3 format. Asian languages not supported
    • Tagged PDF, DOC, DOCX, CSV, XLS, XLSX, RTF, XML and HTM
    • Braille in TXT and PEF format
    • Plain Text in TXT format
  • Input Format EPUB can be converted to:
    • E-book in MOBI format
  • Input Format MOBI can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB format
  • Input Format PPT and PPTX can be converted to:
    • E-book in EPUB and MOBI format
    • Tagged PDF and RTF
    • HTML

Can SensusAccess convert an MP3 file into a textual document?

  • No, SensusAccess does not currently support voice recognition from audio files.

How do I use SensusAccess to convert documents?

To convert documents in SensusAccess, there are four steps in the SensusAccess submission form. Keep in mind tha tthe form expands as you complete each step:

  1. Specify the source type: File, URL or Text. The most common source type is via File, which allows you to choose documents saved to your computer. Choose the file or files to be uploaded and click upload.
  2. Select an output format. Choose your preferred conversion format from the listed outputs (see the Input/Output options or Converstion Matrix available above). The output options are determined by your input format. For outputs like DOC, DOCX, RTF, PDF, XLS, XLSX, CSV, TXT, and HTM outputs, you will need to select "Accessibility Conversion" to see these options.
  3. You will be prompted to specify more details about the output format you have selected. For instance, if you choose MP3 audio as your output format, you will be asked to specify your audio options by choosing the language used in your audio conversion as well as they audio speed. Or if you choose E-book for your output format, you will be asked to specify EPUB, EPUB3, or MOBI as well as your preferred font size.
  4. Enter your CSU-Global email address and hit submit. A receipt will display informing you that your file was successfully submitted.

For more information, please visit the SensusAccess how-to video library and the SensusAccess Guides and Best Practices.

How do I create a tagged PDF with SensusAccess?

The best tagged PDF files are usually created from accessible source documents like a well-structured and fully tagged Word document. However, with SensusAccess you can also create tagged PDF files from other source documents. The list below explains the main options for creating tagged PDF files using SensusAccess:

  • Word and PowerPoint to tagged PDF:  In this case, the semantic structure of the source documents are used to create the document structure in tagged PDF document. This feature is especially useful for Mac users using Office for Mac, as this does not support creation of tagged PDF. However, it is also useful for users on other platforms. Accessibility features in the source document (semantic structure, alternative texts, etc.) are retained in the resulting tagged PDF document. 
  • Untagged PDF to tagged PDF: SensusAccess always assumes that a submitted PDF document is untagged and uses its optical character recognition (OCR) engine to recognize the text, identify images and other elements, and reproduce the reading order of the document. The quality of the tagged PDF depends highly on the quality of the incoming document. 
  • Image file (TIFF, GIF, JPG, BMP etc.) to tagged PDF: The process is similar to the one described for Untagged PDF to tagged PDF. The OCR engine is used to recognize the text, identify images and other elements, and reproduce the reading order of the document. The quality of the tagged PDF depends highly on the quality of the incoming document. 

How long does SensusAccess take to convert files?

  • The average turn-around time for a SensusAccess conversion ranges between a few minutes and a few hours depending on the size and type of your source document and the requested conversion. Smaller documents are typically processed within a few minutes. Large documents - for example textbooks in image-only PDF - may take several hours to convert into a Microsoft Word document or MP3 audio file.

I have not received my converted document from SensusAccess. What is wrong?

  • Several things may have gone wrong. The most common error is that you made a typo when you entered your email address. Simply resubmit your document and make sure that you type your email correctly. When you submit the form, make sure that you see the receipt that your file was successfully submitted.
  • The second most likely cause of this issue is your spam filter. If you cannot find the file in your own junk-mail folder, you may want to contact CSU-Global IT Support to make sure that the SensusAccess.com and robobraille.org domains are both white-listed.
  • Remember that turn-around time ranges between a few minutes to a few hours depending on the size and type of the source document and the requested conversion.

Who will the email from SensusAccess be from?

  • The email will come from the SensusAccess service. The subject will note that the message is from SensusAccess, and it will include the name of the file number that was processed.

Can I send multiple documents to SensusAccess at the same time?

  • Yes, you can submit multiple files for conversion with a single request. All files must be of the same file type. All files will be converted to the same target format.

Can I list multiple email addresses to send converted documents?

  • No, you can only specify one email address as the recipient of the result of a conversion.

Is there a file size limit?

  • Yes, the file size is limited to 50 MB.

What do I do if my file is too big for SensusAccess?

  • If your document is bigger than 50 MB, you could divide it into smaller sections and submit the sections individually.
  • If your input format is an image file that is too big for SensusAccess, you are welcome to store image files on a cloud service (Google Drive, Dropbox, WeTransfer or similar) and mail a link for the files to support@sensus.dk.  Do not attempt to attach the documents to your email. Email attachments will not be converted. SensusAccess will then convert the document to DOC, DOCX and RTF format and return them to you.
  • Note: SensusAccess will not edit the documents or add any markups beyond what their automated optical character recognition (OCR) server is capable of. This service is provided as a courtesy without a guaranteed turnaround time.

Does SensusAccess convert language to language?

  • No. SensusAccess does not currently support language-to-language translation.

How does SensusAccess protect the privacy of the user?

  • SensusAccess is entirely automated and no humans are involved in the conversion process. Documents and conversion requests can be uploaded on encrypted connections and once a conversion is completed, all traces of it are deleted save for a few anonymous details used by SensusAccess for statistical purposes.
  • There is risk that user provided information could be inadvertently disclosed to others and therefore this service is not recommended for materials containing confidential or private information.

What does SensusAccess do with documents after they are converted?

  • SensusAccess immediately deletes documents submitted for conversion after they have been processed.

Who do I contact if I experience issues using SensusAccess?

How fast can I expect a reply from SensusAccess Tech Support?

  • SensusAccess is monitored around the clock. If you experience any issues, please email support@sensus.dk. You can expect to hear back from SensusAccess Tech Support within 8 hours of submitting your request.

Which browsers does SensusAccess support?

  • SensusAccess can be used with all modern browsers. There are known issues with older versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer; these can be overcome by adding the SensusAccess web form to the list of sites to be run in compatibility mode. Please report any browser compatibility issues encountered with SensusAccess to support@sensus.dk

I am trying to upload a document, but cannot get beyond step 1. What is wrong?

  • The SensusAccess form maintains a set of settings of the current session. However, these settings time out after about 20 minutes. If you experience that you do not seem to be able to get beyond step 1, merely reload the form in the browser.

Are there alternatives to using the SensusAccess submission form?

  • Yes, you can email files to the SensusAccess service to convert. Instructions for doing so are available on the SensusAccess website.

Is SensusAccess built accessibly?

  • Yes, the SensusAccess demonstration site as well as the SensusAccess web form comply with the W3C WCAG 2.0 accessibility guidelines at level AA. Please report any compliance issues to contact@sensus.dk. You can see more information about SensusAccess compliance HERE.

Are there more tips for using SensusAccess?