Focusable element has no keyboard trap via standard navigation


Description

This rule checks if it is possible to use standard keyboard navigation to navigate through all content on a web page without becoming trapped in any element.

Applicability

The rule applies to any HTML or SVG element that is focusable.

Note: This rule only applies to HTML and SVG. Thus, it is a partial check for WCAG 2.0 success criterion 2.1.2, which applies to all content.

Expectation

For each target element focus can cycle to the browser UI by using standard keyboard navigation.

Note: Cycling back to the browser UI can be done both by moving forward through the tab order and by moving backwards. It is not possible to fulfill this expectation by using browser specific shortcuts to return to the browser UI.

Assumptions

  • The focus order in keyboard navigation is cyclical, not linear, meaning that the focus order will cycle to the first/last element when it moves away from the last/first element.
  • The Browser UI is part of the focus navigation cycle of the page.

Accessibility Support

There are no major accessibility support issues known for this rule.

Background

Test Cases

Passed

Passed Example 1

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No trap for keyboard navigation.

<a href="#">Link 1</a> <button>Button1</button>

Passed Example 2

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Using tabindex="1".

<div tabindex="1">Text</div>

Passed Example 3

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Using tabindex="-1".

<div tabindex="-1">Text</div>

Failed

Failed Example 1

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Keyboard trap one element.

<a href="#">Link 1</a>
<button onblur="setTimeout(() => this.focus(), 10)">
	Button1
</button>

Failed Example 2

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Keyboard trap group.

<button onblur="setTimeout(() => this.nextElementSibling.focus(), 10)">
	Button1
</button>
<button onblur="setTimeout(() => this.previousElementSibling.focus(), 10)">
	Button2
</button>
<button>
	Button3
</button>

Failed Example 3

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A focusable element between keyboard traps.

<button onblur="setTimeout(() => this.focus(), 10)">Button 1</button>
<button>Button 2</button>
<button onblur="setTimeout(() => this.focus(), 10)">Button 3</button>

Inapplicable

Inapplicable Example 1

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No focusable element.

<h1>Page 1</h1>

Inapplicable Example 2

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Disabled element.

<button type="button" disabled>Click Me!</button>

Inapplicable Example 3

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Hidden element using display:none.

<button type="button" style="display:none;">Click Me!</button>

Inapplicable Example 4

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Hidden element using visibility:hidden.

<a href="#" style="visibility:hidden;">Link 1</a> <button style="visibility:hidden;">Button1</button>

Glossary

Outcome

An outcome is a conclusion that comes from evaluating an ACT Rule on a test subject or one of its constituent test target. An outcome can be one of the three following types:

  • Inapplicable: No part of the test subject matches the applicability
  • Passed: A test target meets all expectations
  • Failed: A test target does not meet all expectations

Note: A rule has one passed or failed outcome for every test target. When there are no test targets the rule has one inapplicable outcome. This means that each test subject will have one or more outcomes.

Note: Implementations using the EARL10-Schema can express the outcome with the outcome property. In addition to passed, failed and inapplicable, EARL 1.0 also defined an incomplete outcome. While this cannot be the outcome of an ACT Rule when applied in its entirety, it often happens that rules are only partially evaluated. For example, when applicability was automated, but the expectations have to be evaluated manually. Such "interim" results can be expressed with the incomplete outcome.

Standard keyboard navigation

Standard keyboard navigation entails using one or more of the following:

  • Tab key
  • Shift+Tab
  • Arrow keys
  • Esc key
  • Enter key
  • Space key

Expected behavior of standard keyboard navigation keys:

  • Tab key: Skipping forward between focusable elements
  • Shift+Tab: Skipping backwards between focusable elements
  • Arrow keys: Navigate input elements, e.g. up/down drop down, between radio buttons etc.
  • Esc key: Close or cancel, e.g close a modal
  • Enter key: Select or activate the element in focus (same as clicking with mouse)
  • Space key: Select input elements, e.g. drop downs, radio buttons etc.

Useful Links


Implementations

This section is not part of the official rule. It is populated dynamically and not accounted for in the change history or the last modified date. This section will not be included in the rule when it is published on the W3C website.

No Implementations

Implementation reports are not provided for this rule.

Acknowledgments

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