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Thread: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?

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Number of posts in this thread: 8 (In chronological order)

From: glen walker
Date: Fri, Mar 15 2019 2:22AM
Subject: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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Go to webaim.org and bring up the list of headings in NVDA (Ins+F7).

WebAIM has two h2s before the main h1. NVDA displays all the headings
using a tree widget but a tree usually has the root node at the top. In
this case, NVDA displays the first two h2s and the main h1 all as siblings
on "level 0". After the h1, everything else is correct but it makes it
appear that there are three h1s on the page, which is not correct.

Has anyone noticed this before?

JAWS doesn't use a tree. It just has a simple list with the heading level
after the heading text.

Glen

From: Maxability A11Y
Date: Fri, Mar 15 2019 12:13PM
Subject: Re: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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I felt it depends on containor nodes and the structure.
The level of divs that hold two H2s and the H1 are the same.
I personally feel the plane way of heading list provided by JAWS is more useful than that of NVDA as an user.


Regards - Rakesh,
M: 9948243336, E: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
Sent from my iPhone

> On 15-Mar-2019, at 1:22 AM, glen walker < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
>
> Go to webaim.org and bring up the list of headings in NVDA (Ins+F7).
>
> WebAIM has two h2s before the main h1. NVDA displays all the headings
> using a tree widget but a tree usually has the root node at the top. In
> this case, NVDA displays the first two h2s and the main h1 all as siblings
> on "level 0". After the h1, everything else is correct but it makes it
> appear that there are three h1s on the page, which is not correct.
>
> Has anyone noticed this before?
>
> JAWS doesn't use a tree. It just has a simple list with the heading level
> after the heading text.
>
> Glen
> > > >

From: Birkir R. Gunnarsson
Date: Fri, Mar 15 2019 12:24PM
Subject: Re: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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Good observation. It is somewhat confusing.
If the root of the tree is the page (not a heading) and the nesting
level is announced every time you arrow up or down (so "2 for the
first 2, "1") it works a bit like the DOM tree in browsers.
Otherwise a list with headings and levels announced is better (and a
page should not have so many headings that displaying them requires
nesting).


On 3/15/19, Maxability A11Y < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
> I felt it depends on containor nodes and the structure.
> The level of divs that hold two H2s and the H1 are the same.
> I personally feel the plane way of heading list provided by JAWS is more
> useful than that of NVDA as an user.
>
>
> Regards - Rakesh,
> M: 9948243336, E: = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
> Sent from my iPhone
>
>> On 15-Mar-2019, at 1:22 AM, glen walker < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
>>
>> Go to webaim.org and bring up the list of headings in NVDA (Ins+F7).
>>
>> WebAIM has two h2s before the main h1. NVDA displays all the headings
>> using a tree widget but a tree usually has the root node at the top. In
>> this case, NVDA displays the first two h2s and the main h1 all as
>> siblings
>> on "level 0". After the h1, everything else is correct but it makes it
>> appear that there are three h1s on the page, which is not correct.
>>
>> Has anyone noticed this before?
>>
>> JAWS doesn't use a tree. It just has a simple list with the heading
>> level
>> after the heading text.
>>
>> Glen
>> >> >> >> > > > > >


--
Work hard. Have fun. Make history.

From: glen walker
Date: Fri, Mar 15 2019 5:42PM
Subject: Re: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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Part of the problem is that NVDA does not announce what level of heading it
is (in the dialog). It won't say an h2 is a "heading level two". It's
relying on the level in the tree. So you have an h2 and an h1 that are both
the same level in the tree and since the heading level isn't announced,
they sound like the same heading level. That just feels like a bug.

From: Birkir R. Gunnarsson
Date: Fri, Mar 15 2019 11:27PM
Subject: Re: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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Yes, it is a bug, or maybe a feature, of NVDA that when you bring up
the headings the levels are not even announced.
I personally think heading levels are somewhat overrated, I've even
seen claims that incorrect or missed heading levels have made pages
unusable, I can't buy that, annoying yes, confusing, sometimes,
unusable, no.

I've carried out some usability testing with screen reader users and I
admit I was surprised to see how little attention was paid to heading
levels.
I am in no way saying the levels don't matter, they do, and users
shuld take more advantage of well structured headings, but I am
curious why NVDA does not list heading levels in their headings view
and can only come to the conclusion they didn't think it important.



On 3/15/19, glen walker < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
> Part of the problem is that NVDA does not announce what level of heading it
> is (in the dialog). It won't say an h2 is a "heading level two". It's
> relying on the level in the tree. So you have an h2 and an h1 that are both
> the same level in the tree and since the heading level isn't announced,
> they sound like the same heading level. That just feels like a bug.
> > > > >


--
Work hard. Have fun. Make history.

From: Guy Hickling
Date: Sat, Mar 16 2019 3:15PM
Subject: Re: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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Birkir,
> ...usability testing with screen reader users and I admit I was surprised
to see how little attention was paid to heading levels.

I think the reason your user testers didn't pay any attention to the
heading levels was that almost every website under the sun gets it wrong
until they first have an audit done! They use the wrong levels, and don't
use heading elements at all on some, and use headings where they aren't
true headings. Many devs choose the heading level to get the text size they
want, instead of using CSS.

So I'm sure many users don't expect the levels to be useful at present. I
very rarely have sites come in for audit that already have the levels
right. As we do our work and persuade websites to comply, the position will
hopefully get better.

Regards,
Guy

From: Steve Green
Date: Sat, Mar 16 2019 3:46PM
Subject: Re: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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We see the same in our user testing. When screen reader users visit a page they don't get an immediate holistic impression like a sighted user does. Instead, they progressively build a mental model of the page to help them navigate within it. There is far too much information to remember, so they only remember the most important stuff. Even if headings are marked up correctly, there's little chance they will remember the levels except for the h1. With the exception of the main heading, the text in each heading is far more important than its level.

My impression is that the correctness of heading levels has virtually no effect on task completion or efficiency. By contrast, completion and efficiency are substantially affected if content is not marked up as a heading when it should be, or vice versa. If anyone wants to sponsor a study into this, I would love to run some tests to validate or disprove this assertion.

Steve Green
Managing Director
Test Partners Ltd


-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of Guy Hickling
Sent: 16 March 2019 21:16
To: webaim-forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?

Birkir,
> ...usability testing with screen reader users and I admit I was
> surprised
to see how little attention was paid to heading levels.

I think the reason your user testers didn't pay any attention to the heading levels was that almost every website under the sun gets it wrong until they first have an audit done! They use the wrong levels, and don't use heading elements at all on some, and use headings where they aren't true headings. Many devs choose the heading level to get the text size they want, instead of using CSS.

So I'm sure many users don't expect the levels to be useful at present. I very rarely have sites come in for audit that already have the levels right. As we do our work and persuade websites to comply, the position will hopefully get better.

Regards,
Guy

From: glen walker
Date: Sat, Mar 16 2019 3:58PM
Subject: Re: Is NVDA using the wrong type of widget (tree) to show the headings on a page?
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> My impression is that the correctness of heading levels has virtually no
effect on task completion or efficiency. By contrast, completion and
efficiency are substantially affected if content is not marked up as a
heading when it should be, or vice versa.

Interesting idea. So you think as long as the main h1 is tagged correctly,
all remaining sub-headings, whether h2, h3, h4, don't really matter what
level they are as long as they're read has headings?

I think that might be slightly true for sighted users too. That is, you
see the main big heading (h1) and then scan/scroll the page to see the
sub-headings to get an idea of what's on the page, but you're scanning
quickly and don't really care if the sub-headings are h2, h3, or h4 or of
different font sizes and weight. But without headings (and their
associated styles) at all, it would all look like plain text and be harder
to scan.