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Re: JAWS and online forms question


From: Andrew Kirkpatrick
Date: Feb 20, 2003 8:20PM

This is a good example of a usability problem for people using assistive technology. The information is
accessible - the user could get it if he knew it was there, but your testing is indicating that a problem exists
and that is worth listening to.

You could either take the suggestion to use fieldset and legend, or you could indicate somehow that
additional information for a particular input is available in the label. If you indicated at the top of the form at
an asterisk in the label indicates additional information about the input is available just above the input, it
might work for some users, but you'll probably get lots of junky data from people who don't understand what
is going on or use the additioanl info.

If you are talking about a form like the one at:
(which seems to fit your description), I don't think that the extra text would be necessary if the labels on the
inputs were more descriptive. I don't believe that I could complete this form successfully - there is extra
text, but I don't get what I'm supposed to enter into the form.

If you send the list a link to a sample page, I'm sure you'd get lots of advice.


2/20/2003 4:34:51 PM, "Miller, Lisa F. (LMS)" < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:

>We are developing an online form, and are having problems navigating thru
>the from with JAWS. There are a number of labeled input fields, which each
>have text instructions preceeding them, such as:
>==>This is a long instruction on how to correctly fill out field 1, plus any
>reference information which might be needed.
>Field1 Label: ___________
>This is a long instruction on how to correctly fill out field 2, plus any
>reference information which might be needed.
>Field2 Label: ____________
>When our tester navigates this page with JAWS, the instructions lines are
>skipped because it is navigating thru the input fields only - to get the
>text, he has to change modes, which a blind person would not know to do -
>there is no indication to the user that the text is there.
>Right now the page is built with one set of FORM tags - is there any way,
>other than wrapping each individual input field with its own FORM tag, to
>get JAWS to read the instruction text? We are debating placing the text
>into read only textareas, but this would not be our first choice. Has
>anyone else ran across this - maybe already solved this for us?
>Lisa F. Miller
>BWXT Y-12 - Technical Computing
>To subscribe, unsubscribe, or view list archives,
>visit http://www.webaim.org/discussion/

Andrew Kirkpatrick
CPB/WGBH National Center for Accessible Media
125 Western Ave.
Boston, MA 02134
Web site: ncam.wgbh.org

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