When using images on a page, you must provide an alternate method for that content. This can be provided in multiple ways. You can provide this information with a caption,
alt attribute (
title attribute, or
aria-label attribute. If an image has text, all the text in the image must be provided in the alternate content. No matter which method is used, an
alt or title attribute must be provided, even if the attribute is blank.
- Using the web developer tool, select images > Display Alt Attributes & Outline All Images.
- Inspect each
altattribute for the following:
- A unique description of the image is provided
- Repeated images used for controls, status indicators, or other programmatic elements have consistent
- Text included in the image should be included in the
altwhen they are important to understanding the image
- Note: DHS Trusted Tester requires all text in an image be included in the
altattribute * “Image of” or “Photo of” is not used * If the
altattribute is empty, ensure the image is purely decorative
- If the image is not decorative, make sure the image is described on the page
- Check outlined images without
altattribute by doing the following:
- Right click the image
- Select ‘Inspect Element’
- Check for a title attribute for the information normally found on the
<img src="/images/sign.jpg" alt="Warning do not read this sign">
Preferred method for providing alternate content. Clear
altattribute with all text included.
<img src="/images/sign.jpg" title="Warning do not read this sign">
Acceptable, but less compatible with certain assistive technologies. Clear title attribute with all text included.
Warning do not read this sign
<img src="/images/sign.jpg" alt=""> <span>Warning do not read this sign</span>
Information contained in the image is provided on the page. In most instances, an
altattribute would be preferred. Images marked with an empty
alt="") are considered “Decorative” and not read by AT.
Image is missing an
altattribute and alternative content
<img src="/images/sign.jpg" alt="sign">
Altattribute is missing text from image
<img src="/images/sign.jpg" alt="Image of sign that says WARNING DO NOT READ THIS SIGN">
Avoid using “Image of” or “Picture of” as the screen reader will notify the user that it’s an image. Also avoid using all caps as some screen readers will read each letter, i.e. W-A-R-N-I-N-G.