Screenshot of new "Interactive Elements" Intelligent Guided Test in the axe DevTools browser extension.

Axe DevTools Updates: New Interactive Elements Intelligent Guided Test™ (IGT) and What’s Left to Test

Ahoy! We have very exciting updates in the 4.11.0 release of the axe DevTools browser extension. This release increases coverage and provides a clear answer to one of your most often asked questions – “What’s left to test?”

“Interactive Elements” IGT replaces “Buttons and Links”

We’ve significantly enhanced the coverage so it’s time for a name change. This IGT now covers all interactive elements, not just buttons and links.

The axe DevTools Browser Extension allows you to select all relevant user interface widget roles such as alerts, grids, menus, progress bars, scroll bars, and more. Our heuristics automatically detect and classify these widget types on your page. Automatic classification drastically reduces the burden on you and speeds up your testing process. The IGT identifies the name, role, and state value of the elements found by our heuristics algorithm so you can review and quickly see gaps. For example, in the screenshot that follows, you will see a “menuitem” role detected and from which you can easily confirm the name’s accuracy.

Screenshot of accessible name and role questions in new Interactive Elements IGT.

The Interactive Elements Intelligent Guided Test now also exposes the name, role and state value in every state of an interactive element. For example, when the menu is expanded, if the value does not reflect the “expanded” state, you will be alerted of the mismatch. As you cycle through the various states of each element, you can now confirm that the state value actually reflects the current state. The screenshot that follows shows the various states you can cycle through to confirm state accuracy.

Screenshot of Element States in new Interactive Elements IGT.

Now, you can test all interactive elements/widgets on your page in every state!

Getting to 100%: What’s Left to Test?

Ahh, the perennial question: “How much coverage does automated and Intelligent Guided Testing using axe DevTools Pro provide?” We talked to many of you and we heard that what you really wanted to know is: “After I’m done with automated and IGT, what’s left to test?” Now you will know with the click of a button. “What’s Left to Test?” is part of this release! 

Screenshot of new "What's left to test" axe DevTools Pro feature.

After you complete your IGTs, click the link and you’ll be taken to clear, easy-to-follow instructions on how to conduct all remaining WCAG 2.1 compliance tests. You can now see and address 100% of Level A and AA checkpoints for your page state from axe DevTools Pro! 

Screenshot of "Page State Tests" to help you with advanced testing coverage after automated and IGT has been completed.

If you find any issues, you can easily log the defect by clicking on the checkpoint link (e.g: 2.2.2 above). A window with all issue details will open. Click “Copy and Close” (below) and these details will be copied to your clipboard. You can now log this issue in axe Auditor or directly into JIRA—or both!

Screenshot of example checkpoint link 2.2.2: Content-Carousel-Unstoppable.

Next, run your testing on items that only need to be tested once per page.

Screenshot of "Page Tests" to help you with advanced testing coverage.

And finally, run your site tests to get to 100% coverage for your app or website.

Screenshot of "Site Tests" to help you with advanced testing coverage.

Axe-core 4.2.2

This version includes an update of the rules engine to axe-core 4.2.2., including bug fixes. For more details, check out the axe-core 4.2 blog post. But here are some noteworthy bug fixes:

  • IGTs not starting/resuming when docking/undocking devtools
  • Scoped selection not working properly in many instances
  • Best practices not getting filtered out of results

Remember, if you’re not currently using axe DevTools Pro, you can build more accessible experiences and get closer to 100% coverage! Sign up for a free trial today.

Photo of Preety Kumar

About Preety Kumar

Preety is the CEO of Deque Systems and co-founded Deque in 1999 with the vision of unifying Web access, both from the user and the technology perspective. Under Preety's leadership, Deque has grown to be a market leader in the field of information accessibility, serving corporate and government clients with the highest standards in information technology such as Veteran Affairs, Department of Education, Humana, Intuit, HSBC, Target, and others. She collaborated with the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative and is a nominated member of the Accessibility Forum's Strategic Management Council: a GSA sponsored group with representatives from the IT industry, academia, Government Agencies, and disabled user groups that fosters information accessibility through mutual cooperation.
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