Use headings to structure your document
Structure your document
Most pages (especially text, but also graphics and multimedia) have structure that the author uses to make the content clearer. In (X)HTML it is possible to use heading elements of various levels to provide some of that structure.
This can be used by people as a table of contents (many tools generate a table of contents like this), or to break the page into smaller chunks, for example to send to a small device. it can also be used to determine the key concepts in a page (as some search engines do).
The Markup validator will provide an outline view of an (X)HTML page to show the structure - this is usually presented with distinctive text styling, although the details of your presentation can be set using a style sheet. If your page has several regular text styles but no heading elements, it may be that those really are headings, but are only being marked as paragraphs with a different style.
All the various flavors of (X)HTML define 6 levels of headings:
<h6>. It is foreseen that XHTML 2 will also provide generic headings, with a level determined by their depth in the structure.
- Headings in HTML 4.01
- Outline of the document generated by the Markup Validator
- an HTML Semantics extractor
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