Using standard text formatting conventions for paragraphs

Important Information about Techniques

See Understanding Techniques for WCAG Success Criteria for important information about the usage of these informative techniques and how they relate to the normative WCAG 2.2 success criteria. The Applicability section explains the scope of the technique, and the presence of techniques for a specific technology does not imply that the technology can be used in all situations to create content that meets WCAG 2.2.


Plain text documents. Not applicable to technologies that contain markup.

This technique relates to Success Criterion 1.3.1: Info and Relationships (Sufficient when used with Making information and relationships conveyed through presentation programmatically determinable or available in text using the following techniques: ).


The objective of this technique is to recognize a paragraph in a plain text document. A paragraph is a coherent block of text, such as a group of related sentences that develop a single topic or a coherent part of a larger topic.

The beginning of a paragraph is indicated by

The end of a paragraph is indicated by

A blank line contains zero or more non-printing characters, such as space or tab, followed by a new line.


Example 1

Two paragraphs. Each starts and ends with a blank line.

This is the first sentence in this
paragraph. Paragraphs may be long
or short.
    In this paragraph the first line is
indented. Indented and non-indented
sentences are allowed. White space within
the paragraph lines is ignored in
defining paragraphs. Only completely blank
lines are significant.



For each paragraph:

  1. Check that the paragraph is preceded by exactly one blank line, or that the paragraph is the first content in the Web page
  2. Check that the paragraph is followed by at least one blank line, or that the paragraph is the last content in the Web page.
  3. Check that no paragraph contains any blank lines

Expected Results

  • All checks above are all true for each paragraph.