Techniques for WCAG 2.0

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G59: Placing the interactive elements in an order that follows sequences and relationships within the content


All technologies that contain interactive elements and define a default tab order for interactive elements.

This technique relates to:


The objective of this technique is to ensure that interactive elements receive focus in an order that follows sequences and relationships in the content. When designing the content, the interactive elements such as links and form controls are placed in the content so that the default tab order follows the sequences and relationships in the content. Each technology defines its default tab order, so the mechanism for placing the controls in the content will depend on the technology used.

As an example, in HTML, the default focus order follows the order in which elements appear in the content source. When the order of the HTML source matches the visual order of the Web page, tabbing through the content follows the visual layout of the content. When the source order does not match the visual order, the tab order through the content must reflect the logical relationships in the content that are displayed visually.



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  1. Determine the order of interactive elements in the content.

  2. Determine the logical order of interactive elements.

  3. Check that the order of the interactive elements in the content is the same as the logical order.

Expected Results