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What’s a Dynamic Page?

Dynamic pages are created by pulling repetitive chunks of HTML code from different sources. For instance, this site uses a database engine to insert the same header and footer on each page of this Web site.

Dynamic pages or content management systems can be a convenient way to make sure navigation blocks, skip navigation links, ALT tags in headers and so forth are consistently implemented on each page. However, almost all dynamic pages require access to special server set-ups, so require input from server administrators or programmers.

Some Dynamic Page Types

  • AJAX
  • Server Side Includes (.shtml)
  • Active Server Pages (.asp)
  • Cold Fusion (.cfm)
  • PHP(.php)
  • Java Servlets and Java Server Pages (.jsp)
  • Perl CGI’s
  • Ruby on Rails
  • Dynamic page technology is used on content management systems such as blogs and wikis, Drupal and other systems

Some Tips

  1. Make sure all HTML code chunks include accessibility tags such as ALT tags, TH tags for data tables, LABEL tags for forms, and so forth.
  2. Avoid using arbitrary database numbers for ALT tags, TITLE tags, FRAME tags and other text-alternative accessibility tags. Ideally, a content management system would allow users to enter an ALT tag text for an uploaded image.

    Inaccessible ALT Tag

    <img src="1103AB43.jpg" alt="Image_1103AB43.jpg" >

    A screen reader would say Image 1103AB43.

  3. If possible, use a script to convert dynamic page style links (e.g. www.mysite.psu/main.php?id=11) to more traditional type links (e.g. www.mysite.psu/page11.html)
    They are less likely to encounter compatibility issues with screen readers or older browsers.
  4. Test any scripted interface element or interaction for screenreader and keyboard accessibility.
  5. Implement recommendations from the WAI-ARIA working group when appropriate.

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