Sensus Access – creating audio files from text based material

Who might this blog post be useful for?: This software is available for anyone with a print based disability, including students with dyslexia or a visual impairment. As it’s a web based application it can be used on and off campus.

What study skills challenges can this app help you overcome?: Difficulties with reading comprehension, fatigue when reading academic texts and challenges with reading print e.g due to a visual impairment. It can also support individuals to increase their ‘reading’ speed – as listening to the text can be quicker than reading it.

What is the tool or study skills strategy?: Creating an audio file of text so that the content can be listened to instead of, or as well as, reading it.

How to create an audio file using Sensus Access


1.Open up the following web page – link

2. Scroll to the bottom of the page

3. To upload a file, such as a Word document or PDF, click on the ‘File’ button then ‘Choose files’. Once you’ve selected what file you’d like to upload click on the ‘Upload’ button. Alternatively, you can select ‘URL’ to upload the text from a website or the ‘Text’ button if you’d like to type in your own text.

Screen shot Sensus Access

4. Step 2 will now appear, select the ‘MP3 audio’ button.

Screen shot Sensus Access stage 2

5. Once stage 3 appears, select the language that you would like text to be read aloud in and the speed of the voice

Screen shot Sensus Access stage 3

6. Now enter your email address. Once the file is ready Sensus Access will email this to you.

Screenshot Sensus Access stage 4

Chloe, who is in the video below, completed an MA Librarianship at the University. As a dyslexic student, she found that listening to her academic text whilst reading, helped to increase her reading comprehension. Chloe, used a program called Lex to create the MP3 file but as this software is only available on limited PCs across campus, the University recommends that students use Sensus Access instead.

Important to note

Students with a print based disability, such as dyslexia or a visual impairment, can request PDF copies of the books that the library stocks (including e-books) by contacting Although the library will always contact the book’s publishers, PDF copies can not always be obtained. This is often when the book was published many years ago or if the supplier is not based in the UK. If a PDF copy of the book can not be supplied, students can use the book scanners, which are in all library sites, to create their own electronic copy of the text. The staff at the library’s Information Desks will be able to help individuals with this.

Thanks for reading,