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Section 508 ICT Testing Baseline

11. Page Titles

Accessibility Requirements

Test Method Rationale

The <title> element defines the title of the document, and is required in all HTML/XHTML documents. This test evaluates the presence of a descriptive title for the Web page.

Limitations, Assumptions, Exceptions

  • Every Web page must have a descriptive title. This test always applies.
  • The <title> element in this test is different from the title attribute used to add tooltip/extra information about an element.
  • Some Web and non-Web applications and may include content that changes dynamically. In such cases, the page title should be sufficient to describe the purpose of the application.
  • HTML5 specification stipulates that an HTML document should have only one <title> element, AND the <title> element should be a child of the <head> element. However, in practice all modern browsers correct syntax errors related to location and nesting of the <title> element. Therefore, user agents that rely on the Document Object Model (DOM) will encounter the <title> in the correct location and will typically present only the first <title> element (if there is more than one) to the user.

11.1 Test Procedure for Page Titled

Baseline Test ID: 11.1-PageTitled

Identify Content

Page <title> element for the page.

Test Instructions

  1. Check that a page <title> element is defined for the page. [SC 2.4.2]
  2. Check that the Page Title identifies the contents or purpose of the Web page. [SC 2.4.2]
    1. For pages within a Web site, check that the Page Title can be used to distinguish among the pages.
    2. For documents or Web applications, the name of the document or Web application would be sufficient to describe the purpose of the page.

Test Results

If any of the above checks fail, then Baseline Test 11.1-PageTitled fails.

Advisory: Tips for streamlined test processes

WCAG 2.0 Techniques

Contact the ICT Baseline Working Group

Related Projects

The Baseline Alignment for Web is being developed to aid in determining if a test process aligns with the ICT Baseline for Web.