HTML page title is descriptive

  • Rule Type:atomic
  • Rule Id: c4a8a4
  • Last modified: Oct 23, 2020
  • Accessibility Requirements Mapping:
    • 2.4.2 Page Titled (Level A)
      • Learn More about 2.4.2 Page Titled
      • Required for conformance to WCAG 2.0 and later on level A and higher.
      • Outcome mapping:
        • Any failed outcomes: success criterion is not satisfied.
        • All passed outcomes: success criterion is satisfied.
        • An inapplicable outcome: success criterion needs further testing.
    • G88: Providing descriptive titles for Web pages
      • Learn More about technique G88
      • Not required to conformance to any W3C accessibility recommendation.
      • Outcome mapping:
        • Any failed outcomes: technique is not satisfied.
        • All passed outcomes: technique needs further testing.
        • An inapplicable outcome: technique needs further testing.
    • H25: Providing a title using the title element
      • Learn More about technique H25
      • Not required to conformance to any W3C accessibility recommendation.
      • Outcome mapping:
        • Any failed outcomes: technique is not satisfied.
        • All passed outcomes: technique needs further testing.
        • An inapplicable outcome: technique needs further testing.
  • Input Aspects:

Description

This rule checks that the first title in an HTML page describes the topic or purpose of that page.

Applicability

This rule applies to the first HTML title element that

Note: The title elements of embedded documents, such as those in iframe, object, or svg elements, are not applicable because those are not web pages according to the definition in WCAG.

Note: The HTML specification - The title element requires that a document only has one title element, and that it is a child of the head element of a document. However, HTML 5.2 also describes what should happen in case of multiple titles, and titles outside the head element. Because of this, neither of these validation issues causes a conformance problem for WCAG.

Expectation

The target element describes the topic or purpose of the overall content of the document.

Assumptions

This rule assumes that the language of each test target can be correctly determined (either programmatically or by analyzing the content), and sufficiently understood.

Accessibility Support

  • This rule assumes that browsers only recognize the first title element if multiple title elements are present in the document. Testing shows that this in general is the case. Therefore the scope of this rule is limited to only checking the first title element in a document.

Background

Test Cases

Passed

Passed Example 1

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This <title> element describes the content of the document.

<html lang="en">
	<head>
		<title>Clementine harvesting season</title>
	</head>
	<body>
		<p>
			Clementines will be ready to harvest from late October through February.
		</p>
	</body>
</html>

Passed Example 2

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This <title> element, the first of two, describes the content of the document.

<html lang="en">
	<head>
		<title>Clementine harvesting season</title>
		<title>Second title is ignored</title>
	</head>
	<body>
		<p>
			Clementines will be ready to harvest from late October through February.
		</p>
	</body>
</html>

Passed Example 3

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This <title> element, which is within the body, describes the content of the document. Even though it is not placed within the <head> element, as expected according to the HTML specification, the rule still passes because the browser fixes it and it doesn't cause any known accessibility issues.

<html lang="en">
	<head> </head>
	<body>
		<title>Clementine harvesting season</title>
		<p>
			Clementines will be ready to harvest from late October through February.
		</p>
	</body>
</html>

Failed

Failed Example 1

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This <title> element does not describe the content of the document.

<html lang="en">
	<head>
		<title>Apple harvesting season</title>
	</head>
	<body>
		<p>
			Clementines will be ready to harvest from late October through February.
		</p>
	</body>
</html>

Failed Example 2

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This <title> element, the first of two, does not describe the content of the document. Most browsers, and this rule, only look at the first <title> element.

<html lang="en">
	<head>
		<title>First title is incorrect</title>
		<title>Clementine harvesting season</title>
	</head>
	<body>
		<p>
			Clementines will be ready to harvest from late October through February.
		</p>
	</body>
</html>

Inapplicable

Inapplicable Example 1

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This title element is a child of an svg element.

<svg xmlns="http://www.w3.org/2000/svg">
  <title>This is a circle</title>
  <circle cx="150" cy="75" r="50" fill="green"></circle>
</svg>

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.

Whitespace

Whitespace are characters that have the Unicode "White_Space" property in the Unicode properties list.

This includes:

  • all characters in the Unicode Separator categories, and
  • the following characters in the Other, Control category:

    • Character tabulation (U+0009)
    • Line Feed (LF) (U+000A)
    • Line Tabulation (U+000B)
    • Form Feed (FF) (U+000C)
    • Carriage Return (CR) (U+000D)
    • Next Line (NEL) (U+0085)

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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