ul and ol must only directly contain li content elements

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Rule Description

Lists must be marked up correctly, meaning they must not contain content elements other than <li> elements.

The Algorithm, in Simple Terms

Ensures that lists are structured correctly

Why this is Important

Screen readers have a specific way of announcing lists. This feature makes lists clearer to understand, but will only work if lists are properly structured. Properly-structured lists only include <li> content elements.

How to Fix the Problem

Ensure all ordered and unordered lists (defined by <ul> or <ol> elements) contain only <li content elements.

Compliance Data & User Impact

User Impact: Critical
Disabilities Affected:
  • Blindness
  • Deafblindness
Issue Type:
  • WCAG 2.0 (A): MUST
  • WCAG 2.1 (A): MUST
WCAG Success Criteria:
  • 1.3.1 Info and Relationships
Section 508 Guidelines:
  • Not applicable

Related Deque University Course Pages

Other Related Resources

Additional Information

Related Rules:
  • Semantic Structure and Navigation: Lists - Navigation Lists
Relevant Technologies:
  • HTML 4
  • HTML5
Test Reliability: Automated testing is possible, with high accuracy
Rule ID: list