Provide each data table a relevant title or summary, clearly identify header cells, use an appropriate mechanism to associate data cells with header cells. Ensure that each layout table is correctly linearized.

There are three types of tables:

  • Layout tables;
  • Data tables (or simple data tables);
  • Complex data tables.

Browsing a table for a visually impaired user via assistive technology (text-to-speech) is different from navigating other textual content.

Blind people move through a table in a sequential way, one cell at a time, line by line. Assistive technologies provide improved browsing using directional arrows.

Some people with mental and cognitive disabilities can also have problems understanding a table that is too complex.


Browsing and understanding a table is therefore more complex. For this reason, always ask yourself the question: « Can I write my content without using a table? »


  • The linearized content of a layout table must be understandable;
  • A complex data table must have a relevant summary, correctly associated with the table;
  • Header cells on simple and complex data tables must be clearly identified, correctly declared and associated to each content cell.