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Re: Navigation in HTML forms


From: Seth Kane
Date: Apr 21, 2009 10:00AM

I personally wouldn't use a H# tag for the questions. When using JAWS
users can use the short cut keys to display all the headers. This would
allow the user to bounce around from question to question rather than
follow them in sequence.

I would use the H# tag to define certain sections i.e. Required
Question, Optional Questions, Billing Information, Shipping, etc.... and
then just use the FIELDSET, LEGEND and LABEL tags to have the correct
information associate to each of the form elements.

-----Original Message-----
[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Hadi Rangin
Sent: Tuesday, April 21, 2009 10:38 AM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: [WebAIM] Navigation in HTML forms


For many years we have been recommending to use fieldset/legend elements
make radio buttons and check boxes accessible. With this technique you
associate each
radio or checkbox item with the proper legend element so a screen reader
user always knows what group of radio or checkbox items he is dealing
so far so good.

On the other hand, I have been recommending to make the question surveys
heading (h2-h6) especially in large surveys. This would allow screen
users to navigate easily between questions and/or skip selected
using screen reader heading navigation function.

Here's the problem:

Apparently, HTMl does not allow the use of header elements inside or
the legend element so I can't not make my radio or checkbox question a
heading in the form. See the question 3 and 4 at:


If they were using ordered list for the survey questions, there wouldn't
a strong need to make the questions a heading because screen reader
offer a good navigation mechanism for lists; question numbering is hard
coded and are not coming from OL.

Here's my questions and I would be thankful if you share your feedback
me and/or the group.

1. How many of you in particular screen reader users use the heading
navigation in a mid-size or large surveys.

2. Do you consider making survey questions a heading as a Best Practice
mid-size or large HTML forms?
Note that in large surveys you might need to skip one or a set of survey
questions so you need a mean to easily jump over selected questions.