Definition Elements with text content in a different language from the principal language of the page must use the lang attribute with a valid IANA language code to identify the change.
Purpose
  • Assistive technologies like screen readers and other speech output technologies need to know the language of the characters of an element to speak the text content correctly.
Mappings
  • HTML4 Legacy Techniques (Recommended)
  • HTML5 and ARIA Techniques (Required)
WCAG 2.0 Success Criteria

3.1.2 Language of Parts (Level AA, Primary Success Criterion)

Rule Category Styling/Content
Scope Page
Target Resources Elements with text content that is in a different language than the principal language of the page
  • [lang]
Techniques
  • Use the lang attribute to define the IANA language of the text content of the element.
  • Use the IANA codes to identify the language of the text in the element (e.g. en, fr, ...).
Manual Checks
  • Review the page for any text content in languages that are different than the principal language of the page.
  • If any changes in language are found, use the lang attribute to identify them.
Informational Links