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Thread: Tagging Form Fields in PDF?

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From: Joseph Sherman
Date: Wed, Jan 22 2020 12:16PM
Subject: Tagging Form Fields in PDF?
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Hi all. I have a question from one of my colleagues I could not answer. What is the practical impact of not tagging form fields? I know it must be done for the specifications and the error checkers, and how to do it. I always take the time to tag them, but we have forms where everything is tagged properly except the form fields.

Without tagging the form fields it works perfectly with the keyboard and in JAWS and NVDA, both with the Tab and Arrow keys. I can even bring up a list of form controls in JAWS.

What benefit does the user get from spending time tagging a hundred form fields? I need to give a better answer than "It's the specification".

Thanks.

Joseph

From: Duff Johnson
Date: Wed, Jan 22 2020 12:29PM
Subject: Re: Tagging Form Fields in PDF?
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The answer is: "context".

Sure, a list of form field controls may work for relatively simple forms… but grouping, sequence, labeling and general context is (at best) risked or lost entirely.

Also, your chosen screen-reader might be smart enough to present untagged fields in a useful manner, but other AT technology may depend on the tags themselves to (for example) highlight a field's label alongside the field. Screen-readers are only one type of AT.

Duff.

> On Jan 22, 2020, at 14:16, Joseph Sherman < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
>
> Hi all. I have a question from one of my colleagues I could not answer. What is the practical impact of not tagging form fields? I know it must be done for the specifications and the error checkers, and how to do it. I always take the time to tag them, but we have forms where everything is tagged properly except the form fields.
>
> Without tagging the form fields it works perfectly with the keyboard and in JAWS and NVDA, both with the Tab and Arrow keys. I can even bring up a list of form controls in JAWS.
>
> What benefit does the user get from spending time tagging a hundred form fields? I need to give a better answer than "It's the specification".
>
> Thanks.
>
> Joseph
>
> > > >

From: chagnon@pubcom.com
Date: Wed, Jan 22 2020 6:05PM
Subject: Re: Tagging Form Fields in PDF?
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Agree with Duff's comments and adding more.

It's not difficult to tag the form fields, just one click and then step through the prompts. See Adobe's training seminars for accessible forms by Rob Haverty at https://adobe.lookbookhq.com/acrobataccessibility/accessible-pdf-forms View time stamp 38:30 in Rob's video.

One other benefit to tagging (and correctly ordering) the <Form> tags is that they can be woven into the instruction text and text labels so that screen reader users get a better experience and don't mistakenly skip over important instructional text. (See time stamp 42:00)

The final tag structure should be something like this:
<P>
First Name (this is the visible text label)
<Form>
Name-OBJR

The <Form> tag is nested inside the <P> that also holds the visible label.

Hope this helps,
—Bevi
— — —
Bevi Chagnon, founder/CEO | = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
— — —
PubCom: Technologists for Accessible Design + Publishing
consulting • training • development • design • sec. 508 services
Upcoming classes at www.PubCom.com/classes
— — —
Latest blog-newsletter – Accessibility Tips at www.PubCom.com/blog

-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of Duff Johnson
Sent: Wednesday, January 22, 2020 2:29 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Tagging Form Fields in PDF?

The answer is: "context".

Sure, a list of form field controls may work for relatively simple forms… but grouping, sequence, labeling and general context is (at best) risked or lost entirely.

Also, your chosen screen-reader might be smart enough to present untagged fields in a useful manner, but other AT technology may depend on the tags themselves to (for example) highlight a field's label alongside the field. Screen-readers are only one type of AT.

Duff.

> On Jan 22, 2020, at 14:16, Joseph Sherman < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
>
> Hi all. I have a question from one of my colleagues I could not answer. What is the practical impact of not tagging form fields? I know it must be done for the specifications and the error checkers, and how to do it. I always take the time to tag them, but we have forms where everything is tagged properly except the form fields.
>
> Without tagging the form fields it works perfectly with the keyboard and in JAWS and NVDA, both with the Tab and Arrow keys. I can even bring up a list of form controls in JAWS.
>
> What benefit does the user get from spending time tagging a hundred form fields? I need to give a better answer than "It's the specification".
>
> Thanks.
>
> Joseph
>
> > > archives at http://webaim.org/discussion/archives
>

From: Jonathan Avila
Date: Wed, Jan 22 2020 6:46PM
Subject: Re: Tagging Form Fields in PDF?
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Moving tagged annotations from the bottom of the tags tree as shown in the video is painstaking. My recommendation is to use the find feature to find the annotation, then select the correct place in the tags tree and then tag the annotation and Adobe Acrobat Pro will place the annotation under the correct location. Then repeat. It's important to make sure you select the correct tag in the tag tree for the location after the next annotation has been found -- not before or it will lose the place. This saves some time -- but I suspect the biggest issue with people not wanting to tag form fields is this step of making sure the form elements and OBJ elements are in the correct location -- but it's something that has to be done. Tagging form fields up front when the form is created by Checking the "Tag annotations" context menu option from the tag tree will make sure they get put in when the form fields are created in Acrobat -- same for links.

Jonathan


-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
Sent: Wednesday, January 22, 2020 8:06 PM
To: 'WebAIM Discussion List' < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Tagging Form Fields in PDF?

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Agree with Duff's comments and adding more.

It's not difficult to tag the form fields, just one click and then step through the prompts. See Adobe's training seminars for accessible forms by Rob Haverty at https://adobe.lookbookhq.com/acrobataccessibility/accessible-pdf-forms View time stamp 38:30 in Rob's video.

One other benefit to tagging (and correctly ordering) the <Form> tags is that they can be woven into the instruction text and text labels so that screen reader users get a better experience and don't mistakenly skip over important instructional text. (See time stamp 42:00)

The final tag structure should be something like this:
<P>
First Name (this is the visible text label)
<Form>
Name-OBJR

The <Form> tag is nested inside the <P> that also holds the visible label.

Hope this helps,
—Bevi
— — —
Bevi Chagnon, founder/CEO | = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = — — —
PubCom: Technologists for Accessible Design + Publishing consulting • training • development • design • sec. 508 services Upcoming classes at www.PubCom.com/classes — — — Latest blog-newsletter – Accessibility Tips at www.PubCom.com/blog

-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > On Behalf Of Duff Johnson
Sent: Wednesday, January 22, 2020 2:29 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Tagging Form Fields in PDF?

The answer is: "context".

Sure, a list of form field controls may work for relatively simple forms… but grouping, sequence, labeling and general context is (at best) risked or lost entirely.

Also, your chosen screen-reader might be smart enough to present untagged fields in a useful manner, but other AT technology may depend on the tags themselves to (for example) highlight a field's label alongside the field. Screen-readers are only one type of AT.

Duff.

> On Jan 22, 2020, at 14:16, Joseph Sherman < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
>
> Hi all. I have a question from one of my colleagues I could not answer. What is the practical impact of not tagging form fields? I know it must be done for the specifications and the error checkers, and how to do it. I always take the time to tag them, but we have forms where everything is tagged properly except the form fields.
>
> Without tagging the form fields it works perfectly with the keyboard and in JAWS and NVDA, both with the Tab and Arrow keys. I can even bring up a list of form controls in JAWS.
>
> What benefit does the user get from spending time tagging a hundred form fields? I need to give a better answer than "It's the specification".
>
> Thanks.
>
> Joseph
>
> > > archives at http://webaim.org/discussion/archives
>