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Form elements in tables

From: Monica Ackermann <AckermannM@btib.css.gov.on.ca>
Date: Mon, 20 Nov 2000 11:13:36 -0500
Message-ID: <6F4426098FF0D31190ED006008216D7061DE66@asap12.btib.css.gov.on.ca>
To: "'w3c-wai-ig@w3.org'" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Hello,

I am working on trying to make an HTML application accessible. The
application is an inhouse application that consists primarily of pages that
contain numerous form elements. I was asked to be involved in the project
late in the development stage and as such there are certain design
constructs that I cannot change (such as the use of tables for layout). 

Some of the pages have tables where each cell is a form element. How can I
best label these elements so that a screen reader user can enter data and
know where they are, without the screen being cluttered with extraneous
labels?

The tables look like this, where the column header can be considered the
form element label:

Column A	Column B	Column C	Column D
[input text]	[input box]	[input box]	[input box]
[input box]	[input box]	[input box]	[input box]
[input box]	[input box]	[input box]	[input box]
[input box]	[input box]	[input box]	[input box]
[input box]	[input box]	[input box]	[input box]


Can one label be used for multiple form elements? What other alternatives
might there be?

	<TR name = "header row">
		<TH><STRONG>Name</STRONG></TH>
		<TH><STRONG>Date</STRONG></TH>
                    	<TH>Gross</TH>
		<TH>Net</TH>
	</TR>
				
		<INPUT type="hidden" 
			name="Month1"
			id="Month1"
			VALUE="">
		</INPUT>	
			
	<TR name = "row1">
		<TD><INPUT name="txtNameID1" maxlength=9 size=10></TD>
		<TD><INPUT name="txtDateMnth1" maxlength=7  size=7></TD>
		<TD><INPUT name="txtGross1" maxlength=9 size=9></TD>
		<TD><INPUT name="txtNet1" maxlength=11  size=7></TD>
		</TR>
				
						
		<INPUT type="hidden" 
			name="Month2"
			id="Month2"
			VALUE="">
		</INPUT>	
			
	<TR name = "row2">
		<TD><INPUT name="txtNameID2" maxlength=9 size=10></TD>
		<TD><INPUT name="txtDateMnth2" maxlength=7  size=7></TD>
		<TD><INPUT name="txtGross2" maxlength=9 size=9></TD>
		<TD><INPUT name="txtNet2" maxlength=11  size=7></TD>
		</TR>


I'd appreciate any help.

Thanks

Monica Ackermann
Assistive Vocational Technology Associates
Toronto, Ontario
Received on Monday, 20 November 2000 11:13:57 GMT

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