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Creating Accessible Online Forms

Proposal No: 3108

Bios & Handouts


  • Jonathan Whiting, Director of Training & Evaluation, WebAIM

Disability Area:          

Topic Area:                  

Length of Session (in hours): 2-hrFormat: Lecture Expertise Level: All Levels Type of session: General Conference

Summary of Session

Forms can present a number of usability and accessibility issues, especially to screen reader users. Learn how to create accessible form fields, buttons, labels, descriptions, error messages, and everything else needed to ensure your forms are accessible to all users.


Accessible forms require three things: First, use the correct form controls for the form. Text boxes, checkboxes, radio buttons, select menus, buttons, and other form controls each have their appropriate place, but they are sometimes used incorrectly. If custom controls like sliders are used, they must be presented in a consistent and predictable way. Second, present necessary labels and prompts to everyone, including screen reader users. This is usually accomplished with the HTML


  1. Select the appropriate form fields or inputs, and ensure they have an accessible label.
  2. Learn when to use ARIA to provide form labels and descriptions, and to present other important information.
  3. Understand the best ways to present accessible error messages.

Speaker Bio(s)

Jonathan Whiting

o: Jonathan Whiting is the Director of Training at WebAIM, based at Utah State University. His main passion is helping others learn to make the web more accessible to people with disabilities. Jonathan is also currently involved in the GOALS Project, a program to assist institutions of Higher Education in improving their accessibility system-wide. With a Master's Degree in Instructional Technology and over fifteen years of experience in the field of web accessibility, Jonathan has published dozens of articles, tutorials, and other instructional resources. He has traveled extensively to train thousands of web developers and other professionals who develop or maintain web content.


Creating accessible forms