Understanding Success Criterion 2.4.10: Section Headings

Understanding Success Criterion 2.4.10 Section Headings

Provide headings to all sections so that users with cognitive and visual impairments can easily understand your website. 

Official Requirements

Success Criterion 2.4.10 Section Headings (Level AAA): Section headings are used to organize the content.

“Heading” is used in its general sense and includes titles and other ways to add a heading to different types of content.

This success criterion covers sections within writing, not user interface components. User interface components are covered under Success Criterion 4.1.2.

Why is it required?

Users with cognitive disabilities find it difficult to focus for a long period of time or remember where they are on the page. Therefore providing headings to every section will help these users easily find their desired content and go through it. Users with visual impairments may navigate by skipping between headings, therefore it also helps them to seamlessly navigate through the website. 

How do we fix it?

If your page has sections and subsections, then follow the heading hierarchy (H1>H6) to help users easily distinguish and understand each section.

Are there any exceptions?

Although the criteria applies to all content, it is not always possible to add headings.

For example: When it’s a long letter covering various topics, adding headings would be very strange and may make it more difficult to read. 

Mistakes to avoid

Adding too many headings to the content as it makes the content harder to read

Picture of Aditya Bikkani

Aditya Bikkani

Aditya is the COO of AELData, a growing technology company in the Digital Publishing and Education sectors. He is also an entrepreneur and founder of an accessibility tool called LERA. A W3C COGA (Cognitive and Learning Disabilities Accessibility) Community Member Aditya contributes to researching methodologies to improve web accessibility and usability for people with cognitive and learning disabilities.

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