Center for Online Learning
Georgia Southern University

Accessibility: Typography

For all types of documents designed to be read on-screen, it is best to use standard fonts that are easy to read and found on virtually all computers.

Sans-Serif or Serif Fonts?

Use sans-serif. The most legible fonts for digital displays are typically sans-serif — which are traditionally composed of the simplest geometric shapes. Serif fonts often have contrasting strokes and “serifs” at the end of each stroke which are often hard to see on low resolution computer screens.

Sans Serif or Serif Fonts

Differences between sans-serif and serif fonts.

Common Sans-Serif Fonts

Verdana is the easiest to read because it has large lowercase letters, loose letter-spacing, and generous negative space. While Arial is very popular, notice how the letter spacing is tighter and the letters a little bit smaller at the same font size.

  • Arial: The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy brown dog.
  • Calibri: The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy brown dog.
  • Trebuchet: The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy brown dog.
  • Verdana: The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy brown dog.

Common Serif Fonts

Georgia is the easiest serif font to read because it has the largest lowercase letters. If you want to use a serif font, Georgia is the best choice.

  • Cambria: The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy brown dog.
  • Georgia: The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy brown dog.
  • Times: The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy brown dog.

Font Size

For documents meant to be read on screen, most Web browsers, operating systems, and software allow users to enlarge or shrink the font or document size according to their personal preferences. However, ten-point type is considered the appropriate starting point for your smallest document font size.

  • This is 10-point type, Verdana.
  • This is 12-point type, Verdana.
  • This is 14-point type, Verdana.

Last updated: 1/4/2016

Center for Online Learning : : Henderson Library, Suite 1303 : : (912) 478-0049