Can all functionality and content be operated through the use of a keyboard or keyboard interface?
Why is this important?
People with vision and motor impairments may find it difficult or impossible to use a mouse. They rely on the keyboard or an alternate keyboard interface to access and operate content.
A site or application that is fully functional through a keyboard, will also provide users flexibility to navigate and operate content using various types of keyboards or assistive technologies.
Whom does it benefit?
As a person with low vision, it is difficult for me to see and use the mouse pointer.
I want to navigate my science eText using my keyboard
so that I can orient myself and complete my assignments.
As a person who is blind, I use a combination of assistive technologies.
I want to be able to navigate and interact with content using my keyboard while my screen reader narrates
so that I can complete important tasks.
As a user who recently broke my hand that I use to operate the mouse,
I want to be able to use the keyboard to navigate my online course
so that I can continue my assignments.
What should you do?
- Make sure keyboard functionality is available for all content.
- Do not require users to complete multiple keystrokes in a short period of time.
- Do not require users to hold a single key for an extended period of time for an action to be recognized.
- Ensure that keyboard commands do not interfere with standard operating system functionality.
Exception: If functions are dependent on recognizing the user’s path or movement, rather than just the end points, these functions do not have to be available to the keyboard (e.g. a free-hand drawing program).
How do you do it?
- In most cases, using standard HTML controls will ensure keyboard accessibility.
- If functionality requires going beyond standard HTML controls, use WAI-ARIA authoring practices to ensure that keyboard functionality is maintained.
Need technical guidance?
Technical guidance is available for implementing this Success Criterion at the Understanding Success Criterion 2.1.1: Keyboard page.
Additional resources to help you