Skip to content

Lists on websites

Whenever content on a web page can be described as a list of something, it should be created as a list, using the list features that are provided by the authoring tool.

For an overview of this issue see Lists in our IT Accessibility Checklist.

Techniques using HTML

In HTML, code your lists using <ul> (unordered list, usually displayed with bullets) or <ol> (ordered list, usually displayed with numbers), depending on whether the order of list items is important.

TheĀ <dl> (definition list) element is sometimes appropriate as well, for example to markup definitions in a policy or contract, vocabulary terms in a lesson, or frequently asked questions. However, screen readers do not currently differentiate between definition lists and unordered lists, so using this element is optional, but not a bad idea when it’s the correct choice for accurately representing the semantics of the content.

Techniques using a rich content editor

Rich content editors such as those used for adding content to Canvas, WordPress, or Drupal, all include multiple buttons on their toolbars for adding lists to web pages. The following screenshot shows the “Bulleted List” and “Numbered List” buttons in WordPress.

WordPress Toolbar, with the Bulleted List button selected