4.1 Compatible

Maximize compatibility with current and future user agents, including assistive technologies.


Using proprietary coding (e.g. Microsoft functionality that only works on Internet Explorer or Edge) or poor coding constructs can decrease compatibility with multiple browsers and devices. Inherently, most good coding constructs should already work with assistive technology (AT). Occasionally, something may stop working with a particular AT, but the goal is not to react to temporary outages of service.

Tips for making content and applications compatible:

  1. Start with the basic, semantic code, ignoring the look and feel (e.g. layout) for the time being.
  2. Use W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) standards and guidelines for
    1. applications, or Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA): WAI-ARIA Authoring Practices (most common guide to use)
    2. authoring toolsAuthoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG)
    3. user agentsUser Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG)
  3. Start laying out content to add styling using CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) by adding appropriate classes to content and layout areas.
  4. Add and test mobile accessibility functionality.