ARIA roles used must conform to valid values

Rule ID: aria-roles
Ruleset: axe-core 4.9
User Impact: Critical
Guidelines: WCAG 2.1 (A), WCAG 2.0 (A), WCAG 2.2 (A), EN 301 549

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Compliance Data & Impact

User Impact


Disabilities Affected

  • Blind
  • Deafblind
  • Mobility


  • WCAG 2.1 (A)
  • WCAG 2.0 (A)
  • WCAG 2.2 (A)
  • EN 301 549

WCAG Success Criteria [WCAG 2.1 (A)]

  • 4.1.2: MUST: Name, Role, Value

WCAG Success Criteria [WCAG 2.0 (A)]

  • 4.1.2: MUST: Name, Role, Value

WCAG Success Criteria [WCAG 2.2 (A)]

  • 4.1.2: MUST: Name, Role, Value

EN 301 549 Guidelines

  • MUST: Name, Role, Value

How to Fix the Problem

Ensure all values assigned to role="" correspond to valid ARIA roles.

Available roles by type are:

  • Document blocks: application, article, blockquote, caption, document, feed, group, heading, list, listitem, note, paragraph, separator (when not focusable), toolbar.
  • Document Content: code, definition, deletion, emphasis, figure, img, insertion, mark, math, meter, strong, subscript, superscript, term, time, tooltip
  • Landmark: banner, complementary, contentinfo, form, main, navigation, region, search.
  • Live region: alert, log, marquee, status, timer.
  • Presentational: none, generic, presentation (to cancel the native role of the element)
  • Table: cell, columnheader, row, rowgroup, rowheader, table.
  • Widget: button, checkbox, gridcell, link, menuitem, menuitemcheckbox, menuitemradio, option, progressbar, radio, scrollbar, searchbox, separator (when focusable), slider, spinbutton, switch, tab, tabpanel, textbox, treeitem.
  • Widget (composite): combobox, grid, listbox, menu, menubar, radiogroup, tablist, tree, treegrid.
  • Window Roles: alertdialog, dialog.

Why it Matters

Elements assigned invalid ARIA role values are not interpreted by assistive technology as intended by the developer.

When screen readers and other assistive technologies do not know the role of each element on the web page, they are not able to interact with it intelligently, nor are they able to communicate the role to the user. An element's features, properties, and methods of conveying information to and/or from the user can't be communicated via assistive technologies when a role value is invalid.

Rule Description

Values assigned to ARIA role values must be valid. Role values must be spelled correctly, correspond to existing ARIA role values, and must not be abstract roles to correctly expose the purpose of the element.

The Algorithm (in simple terms)

Checks all elements that contain the WAI-ARIA role attribute to ensure that the role value is valid


Other Resources

You may also want to check out these other resources.

Refer to the complete list of axe 4.9 rules.

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