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Setting up Guided Access on an iPad (iOS 15)

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  • Published: 2022
  • Revision: 1.0
  • Format: A3
  • File type: pdf
  • File size: 1Mb


An accessible breakdown of this PDF poster is available further down the page.

Guided Access is an incredibly useful tool which is simple to set up and use.  It can support learners to focus on individual apps as well as turning off iPad features which may be distracting.

The infograph/poster highlights:

  • How to set up Guided Access for the first time
  • How to turn it on and off
  • The features you can control with Guided Access
  • What to do if you forget your Guided Access passcode.

To find out more about using iPads for learners with Additional Support Needs visit the 'iPads' page on the CALL Scotland website.

An accessible breakdown of this PDF poster is available further down the page.

Contents of the PDF poster

This is an accessible breakdown of the contents of the PDF poster, designed to be accessible with a screen reader, and also for people who find it hard to see or access the links in the poster.

What is Guided Access?

In order to support a learner to make best use of an app for learning and develping skills, Guided Access allows you to control which features of the iPad and app you want to make available.

With Guided Access turned on you can lock the Home button, disable areas of the screen, turn off the Sleep/Wake button, turn off the volume buttons, lock automatic screen rotation, turn off the keyboard and set a time limit for use of an app.

Guided Access is a useful tool which is simple to set up and use.

Setting up Guided Access for the first time

  1. Tap on the settings icon.
  2. Then tap on General>Accessibility
  3. Scroll down to 'Learning' and tap on 'Guided Access'.
  4. Tap to turn it on.
  5. Tap 'Passcode Settings'
  6. Tap 'Set Guided Access Passcode'
  7. Enter a 6 digit number. This is the number you will enter each time you end a Guided Access session.

What can you control using Guided Access?

The following features can be controlled via Guided Access:

Home Button

Starting Guided Access from within an app automatically disables the home button, effectively 'locking down' the app until Guided Access is turned off.

This is a really useful feature for learners who are easily distracted by particular apps.

Sleep/Wake Button

Guided Access allows you to turn the sleep/wake button off.

Volume Button

You can disable the volume buttons.


You can turn off the keyboard so that it cannot appear on the screen


You can select areas of the screen to be disabled. Useful if you want the 'settings' button disabled within an app.


You can use this to prevent the screen automatically rotating or disable the 'shake screen' to undo typing feature.

Time Limit

This handy feature means you can set a time limit for a Guided Access session, limiting how long you can access an app before you have to re-enter the Guided Access passcode to continue.

Turning Guided Access on and off

Once you have turned Guided Access on in the accessibility settings it is easy to quickly turn it on and off.

To turn it on, open an app. Triple click the home button. To turn it off, triple click the home button and enter the 6 digit passcode when prompted.

Forgotten the Guided Access Passcode?

If you don't know or forget the Guided Access passcode you can become 'stuck' in app; nothing happens when you press the home button.

To solve this issue, press the home button and the power button at the same time until the screen is dark and the apple icon appears.

The iPad will reboot.