Mac for the Blind Audio Tutorial series – Mac Lessons

Mac for the Blind Audio Tutorial Series – Mac Lessons

Welcome to the Mac for the Blind Audio Tutorial Series page for Mac OS X. These lessons specifically address Mac OS X and both the VoiceOver features and Mac OS X features of importance. Since the Mac operating system is updated yearly, I have tried to keep the material as general as possible so that the material addresses the vast majority of users.

Please check back here from time to time as these lessons will be updated, if necessary, or as I add more material. Furthermore, please feel free to send me feedback or any comments you might have to help me improve the material or for ideas for future lessons.


Important Copyright Info



Lesson 1: An Introduction to VoiceOver

This file is free for you to download. In it, I cover all of the basics to help you get up and running on your Mac with VoiceOver. The tutorial includes some tips and advice for the Windows user who might be trying to learn the Mac or is switching to the Mac. It also includes additional suggestions and information for using your Mac effectively as a VoiceOver user. The basic VoiceOver keyboard commands and features, as well as the VoiceOver help system, are covered in detail.

Click here to download it.


Lesson 2: Interaction on the Mac with VoiceOver

This file discusses the concept of interaction on the Mac as well as the keyboard commands for interacting and to stop interacting. It also covers tips for knowing when to interact and when it is not necessary. This can be one of the more challenging aspects of learning VoiceOver, particularly for people who have used Windows, so this file is intended to help such a user become comfortable with this feature.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 3: An Introduction to the VoiceOver Utility

This file covers the VoiceOver Utility feature in Mac OS X. I go over how to access the utility, its layout, how to navigate it and then give an overview of the ten, utility categories. Additionally, exporting/importing preferences, resetting preferences and setting up Portable Preferences is explained.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 4: The Finder on the Mac

This file explains the Finder on the Mac with VoiceOver. This includes setting view options, folder navigation and the folder structure of the Root Directory, User folders and the User Home Folder. In addition, the use of the Sidebar by VoiceOver users is explained, and the keyboard shortcuts available in Mac OS X are mentioned.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 5: VoiceOver Utility Commanders

This lesson describes the four Commanders features that are part of VoiceOver on the Mac. The Trackpad Commander, Numpad Commander, Keyboard Commander and Quick Nav Commander are each explained in detail and in which situations they are best used. In addition, I detail the steps for customizing them and give examples of how you can effectively utilize them to make your VoiceOver experience even better.

Price: $40.00


Lesson 6: VoiceOver and Safari

Part 1: In this tutorial, I begin to talk about using VoiceOver and Safari. This is the first part of the lesson, which includes detailing some of the important preferences in the VoiceOver Utility in the Web category. Then, I explain, with examples, the two methods that one can use to navigate webpages, VoiceOver keyboard commands and the Quick Nav feature.

Price: $35.00


Part 2: This is the second part of the VoiceOver and Safari lesson. In this tutorial, I cover some Safari basics, such as cleaning up the Safari window to eliminate some clutter, as well as how to enable use of the tab key and shift-tab combination for the Windows users learning or switching to the Mac. Searching for specific content by way of the web item rotor and Item Chooser menu are explained, as well as web spots and the Safari Reader. Finally, I talk about the Safari Reading List feature and how to deal with downloads in Safari.

Price: $40.00


Get both parts of lesson six in one file and save $5.00!

Price: $70.00


Lesson 7: Working with VoiceOver and Apple Mail on the Mac

In this lesson, we will work on the Apple Mail application on your Mac with VoiceOver. A description of the Mail screen and how to navigate your inbox and message lists is explained in depth. Also, how to compose a new message, reply to messages, forward messages and deal with attachments is all detailed as well. Working with mailboxes and creating signatures are other areas I discuss for you to utilize on your system.

Price: $45.00


Lesson 8: Working with Text and VoiceOver on the Mac

This lesson addresses the subject of working with text on the Mac from the VoiceOver perspective. Navigating and reading text, as well as inserting and deleting text is explained by way of examples for you to utilize. Additionally, the major text verbosity settings in the VoiceOver Utility and the methods of spellchecking are also detailed.

Note that Text Edit is the application one will use in this lesson, but the material covered does readily apply to any other word processor application you might choose to use on your Mac.

Price: $40.00


Lesson 9: VoiceOver and Applications on the Mac

This lesson is what I like to call “Application 101” material. It discusses how one acquires both Mac App Store and third party applications and the differences that one can encounter in downloading them. Also, upgrading applications and deleting them are topics covered in-depth as well. Finally, the Gate Keeper Security feature in Mac OS X and its impact on third party applications is explained.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 10: VoiceOver and the Calendar on the Mac

This lesson covers use of the Calendar application on the Mac. It discusses the view options for the calendar and how to navigate and locate your events. Creating events, and viewing and editing events and the use of multiple calendars is also detailed. Additionally, the topic of syncing ones calendars via iCloud is also touched upon as well.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 11: VoiceOver and Contacts on the Mac

This lesson discusses the Contacts application on the Mac. This includes navigating the application and the contact list table, the contact details scroll area and the groups list. Also, creating contacts, editing contacts and working with distribution lists are other areas I cover.

Price: $30.00


Lesson 12: VoiceOver and Time Machine on the Mac

This lesson explains what Time Machine is and how it can be used to backup your Mac. I go over how to setup and prepare a disk for Time Machine use and what to expect when you backup. Besides also detailing the settings in System Preferences for Time Machine and selecting multiple disk for backup use, I also talk about other types of backup solutions and ideas.

Price: $40.00


Lesson 13: VoiceOver and OCR on the Mac

This tutorial gives the listener an overview of the state of OCR products on the Mac as of El Capitan. I go over DocuScan Plus, Abby FineReader Pro and Prizmo as viable scanning solutions and explain how to use them, as well as pointing out strengths and shortcomings of each product. I do demonstration scans with all 3 products and allow the user to hear them in use. I also talk about the VueScan product, though, unfortunately, I am not able to demonstrate it in use.

Note that this tutorial does not set out to endorse or promote any product over another. I simply want the listener to have a general idea that there are OCR options available for the Mac, and your choices are very good ones.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 14: VoiceOver and Notes on the Mac

This tutorial covers the Notes application on the Mac. The process of creating notes is detailed, as well as the use of folders. Also, the various options one has that can be utilized for formatting notes is demonstrated as well. Lastly, I mention a few pointers about syncing your notes to iOS devices and what to expect when doing that.

Price: $30.00


Lesson 15: VoiceOver and iTunes on the Mac

In this tutorial, I present several iTunes basics to get the user familiar with how iTunes works and the easiest ways to use it. I feel that iTunes has gotten an unfair and somewhat misinformed bad reputation among the blind, so I hope to clarify how to best understand the interface and how to successfully make use of the application. I present several examples of using iTunes and I demonstrate several features during the course of the tutorial. This includes ways to view your music, playlists, audio books, and podcasts, as well as how to navigate and search the iTunes store.

Price: $45.00


Lesson 16: VoiceOver and Messages on the Mac

In this lesson, I detail the use of the Messages application on the Mac. This includes using iMessages and text messages between Apple devices effectively through the Continuity feature. Also, for those of you who still use instant messaging clients, I explain how to utilize those services as well. I also go over navigating the interface, and Preferences for Messages of importance.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 17: VoiceOver and System Preferences on the Mac

In this lesson, I focus on the System Preferences application on the Mac. I explain the layout of System Preferences and the differences between personal preferences and those the impact the system. Additionally, I spend time showing the user around the preference panes of some of the major preferences and how to configure them. Along the way, I also try to present other quick tips and tricks that are useful while in System Preferences. This is probably the lengthiest of the tutorials, but there is a lot of material to cover.

Price: $45.00


Lesson 18: VoiceOver and Reminders on the Mac

This is a lesson on using the Reminders app on the Mac with VoiceOver. I explain how to use lists and then how to assign reminders to specific lists. Sharing lists and configuring reminders is also detailed in the tutorial.

Price: $30.00


Lesson 19: VoiceOver and the Dock on the Mac

In this tutorial, I cover the Dock in Mac OS X and how it is used with VoiceOver. This includes getting to the Dock, and how to navigate it and open items. Additionally, how to move items is detailed, as well as adding and removing items on the Dock. I also discuss the use of folders on the Dock, including the Trash folder, and, of course, how to leave the Dock without opening anything or making any changes.

Price: $35.00


Lesson 20: VoiceOver and Skype on the Mac

This lesson covers the Skype communication application and its use with VoiceOver on the Mac. I demonstrate how to obtain and install the application first. Then, I go over all of the major tasks one can do and how to accomplish them. The overall application interface, the menus and Skype preferences are also detailed as well. It is meant to get a user up and running with Skype and to be comfortable and knowledgeable in utilizing it.

Price: $45.00


Lesson 21: VoiceOver and SIRI on the Mac

This lesson covers the basics for using SIRI on the Mac. I discuss some of the differences you will find between using SIRI on the Mac compared to the iOS devices. Also, how to ask SIRI to perform a number of different tasks, and how to read the results if they are not automatically spoken by SIRI.

Price: $30.00


Lesson 22: VoiceOver and Pages on the Mac Part 1

This is an introduction to the word processor application on the Mac, Pages. I explain some basic setup suggestions for Pages preferences, as well as how to customize the document window. Document creation, and finding items on the menu are also detailed. Working with documents and some information about Pages that differs from working with documents in Windows are also covered.

Note that this material is significantly credited to Anne Robertson and her book, “My Mac Pages – A VoiceOver Guide to Word Processing”. I highly recommend this book, as well as the course Anne offers for learning Pages in depth.

Price: $45.00


Lesson 22: VoiceOver and Pages on the Mac Part 2

This lesson focuses on some specific tasks using Pages. I try to give some samples of the kinds of accessible tasks one can accomplish. This includes inserting tables into documents, dealing with place holder text and templates and utilizing the formatter. It is not intended on being an in depth lesson, but I try to provide as much information as possible to enable the listener to work with other areas of Pages successfully.

Note that this material is significantly credited to Anne Robertson and her book, “My Mac Pages – A VoiceOver Guide to Word Processing”. I highly recommend this book, as well as the course Anne offers for learning Pages in depth.

Price: $45.00


Get both parts of lesson 22 in one file and save $10.00!

Price: $80.00


Lesson 23: VoiceOver and Notifications on the Mac

This lesson goes over how to effectively use VoiceOver with the Notification Center on the Mac. It includes how to configure Notification Center preferences in System Preferences and how to set up keyboard shortcuts to get to the Notification Center or to toggle Do Not Disturb on or off. In addition, the Today and Notification views of Notification center itself are detailed and how to best work with them.

Price: $25.00


Lesson 24: Updating or Installing MacOS

In this lesson I both explain how to update an existing system and how to install a brand new copy of MacOS onto a system. This includes the differences between installing over an older version of MacOS or doing a “clean install”. Also, the Setup Assistant steps that one will encounter after the system has been either updated or you are installing a fresh version of MacOS are demonstrated as well.

Price: $40.00


Lesson 25: VoiceOver and Disk Utility on the Mac

In this tutorial, I explain how the Disk Utility app works for doing basic maintenance for both your system disk or connected drives. I explain the interface and go over the options one will find in the toolbar. Also, I detail erasing a disk or partitioning a disk, and the differences between a disk and a volume.

Price: $30.00


Lesson 26: VoiceOver and the Recovery System on the Mac

In this tutorial, I explain how the recovery system in MacOS works. I explore the various utilities available once you boot into the recovery system and describe each of them. Additionally, I show you how Disk Utility and the Reset Password Utility works from recovery.

Price: $25.00


Get all 26 Mac lessons and save 20%!

Order here to get all 26 Mac for the Blind audio tutorials and save 20%. When you order, you will receive the link to lesson 2 immediately and links to lessons 3 through 25 in a second email. This offer is good for lessons 2 through 26 only and will be updated as new lessons are added.

Lessons 2 through 26 price is $970, but with your 20% savings get them all now for $776!

Price: $776.00