Unique Title Overview


Good web design allows users to easily identify what website and sub-section of the website they are viewing. The identity, or "branding," of a website is done through the combination of text, colors, graphical styling and logos that are used for the overall look and feel of the site. Many people with disabilities cannot see or use the graphics for various reasons and therefore need to have unique title text to identify the website and the context of the current web page.

The title element in the head section needs to contain information about the website and sub-section, and the sub-section information needs to be contained in an h1.

Benefits to People with Disabilities

  1. Screen reader users can effortlessly identify the web resources they are viewing because the title element content is easily read by screen readers such as Window-Eyes, Jaws and HAL.
  2. Screen reader users can easily determine whether a new web resource has been loaded and what the purpose of the current web resource is. They do not need to guess by interpreting the information available on the web resource .
  3. Using the h1 element makes it easier for keyboard users, including people with physical disabilities and screen reader users, to navigate using keyboard command in some broswers.

Benefits to All Users

  1. Users can easily identify purposes of web resources.

Benefits to Developers

  1. Styling titles consistently across web resources is easier using CSS because h1 is designated to represent the title.
  2. As web developers separate structure from styling, it becomes easier to create and update resources.

Related Resources

  1. 13: The HTML <head> element - Judging a document by its title (Opera Web Standards Curriculum)

HTML Markup Details

title element
The title element in the head element should contain both the title of the website and title of the web resource.
The title element is typically rendered in the title bar at the top of the graphical window of most graphical browsers such as Internet Explorer, Opera, Mozilla and Firefox.
h1 element
The h1 element should contain the title for the web resource and may contain the title of the website.
The page should contain at least one and no more than two h1 elements.

Related Accessibility Requirements

Illinois Information Technology Accessibility Standards
1.3 Provide meaningful page titles.
2.1 Use text to display text, unless formatting that cannot be achieved with CSS is required.
Section 508
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 (WCAG 2.0)
2.4.2 Page Titled: Web pages have descriptive titles.
2.4.10 Section Headings: Section headings are used to organize the content.
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 (WCAG 1.0)
3.5 Use header elements to convey document structure and use them according to specification.
13.4 Use navigation mechanisms in a consistent manner.