Desktop Screen Readers Forms Guide

Screen reader keyboard shortcuts > Desktop Screen Readers Forms Guide

Also available in a single-page printer-friendly PDF version.

Notes

  • Insert is the default NVDA modifier key, but Caps Lock can be set as a duplicate modifier key (so that it can be used in place of Insert).
  • The Narrator key, Caps Lock (or Insert can be used in its place), can be locked so it doesn’t need to be pressed with every command by pressing Caps Lock + Z (or Insert + Z) (only when not in Scan Mode).
  • VO is an abbreviation for VoiceOver keys Control + Option. The VO keys can be locked so that they don’t need to be pressed with each VoiceOver command by pressing VO + ;.

Screen reader keystrokes for forms

Screen Reader Keyboard Commands in Common for Forms
Task Command
Navigate through focusable items Tab (or Shift + Tab to go backward)
Activate a button Enter or Space Bar
Select a checkbox Tab to the checkbox, then press Space Bar
Select a radio button Tab to the group of radio buttons, use the Arrow Keys to choose one of them, then press Space Bar
Select an item in a <select> drop-down list Tab to the <select> field, press Alt/Option + Down Arrow to open the list, use Down/Up Arrow to select item, then press Enter
Screen Reader Keyboard Commands for Forms
Task JAWS NVDA Narrator VoiceOver
Toggle modes Forms Mode: (On) (Automatic when in form element), (Off) Numpad Plus To Browse/Focus Mode or Forms Mode: Insert + Space Bar Scan Mode: Caps Lock + Space Bar Not Available
Navigate to a form In Document Mode, press F In Document Mode, press F In Scan Mode, press F VO + Command + J
Navigate to next form element F (or Shift + F to go backward) F (or Shift + F to go backward) F (or Shift + F to go backward) VO + Command + J (or Shift + VO + Command + J to go backward)
List all form elements Insert + F5 Insert + F7, then Alt + F Caps Lock + [F5 or F6], then Tab (twice) to the Scoping drop-down list and select Form Fields VO + U, then Left/Right Arrow until reaching Form Controls list