3.2.1 On Focus

When any component receives focus, it does not initiate a change of context. (Level A)


The intention of this checkpoint is to allow the users predict the behavior of user interface components. Any unexpected behavior that happens when the user navigates to the component either with keyboard or with mouse may be disorienting and confusing for certain users. Unless a specific script is used the appearance or the functionality of the components will not change. Ensure that unexpected changes does not happen for user interface components that disoriant the users.

Some examples of the changes that happen on focus are

  1. Opening of a popup when user focuses on a link.
  2. Opening of a sub-menu on focus.
  3. Form is submitted when focused on a button.
  4. Selecting an option in the dropdown and pressing escape or tab navigates to different page.
  5. Help icon that opens automatically on focusing to a text field.

Who benefits

People with visual challenges, cognitive difficulties and motor disabilities benefit when changes does not happen on focus.

Note: A change of content is not always a change of context. This success criterion is automatically met if changes in content are not also changes of context.

WCAG 2.0 Techniques

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