Support Article

Unable to use arrows keys with radio buttons when using JAWS



We have a grid with two fields, one is a checkbox and the second is group of radio buttons with Yes/No options in it. With JAWS active, when we TAB from the checkbox field over to the radio button field, we are unable to engage the arrow keys to navigate between the radio button options.

Error Messages

Not Applicable

Steps to Reproduce

Not Applicable

Root Cause

The reported behavior is expected when you have a checkbox field before the group of radio button fields.


Here’s the explanation for the reported behavior:

There are two scenarios with the radio buttons that you need to keep in mind when JAWS is active:

1. without checkbox field

In this scenario, when you arrive from the text box field into the first radio button option, JAWS says - "To change selection use Up/Down arrow". This is when it is OK to engage Up/Down arrow keys for navigation between radio button elements.

2. with CHECKBOX followed by Radiobuttons

In this scenario, when you arrive from the checkbox field into the first radio button option, JAWS does NOT say - "To change selection use Up/Down arrow". So in such scenarios, where JAWS does not tell you to engage Up/Down arrow keys, you should use "a" and "Shift+a" keys to navigate through the radio button elments. To select one radio button option, you engage the spacebar.
You can refer to the JAWS documentation on (Forms section)

This behavior is not dependent on Pega code, you can see the same behavior of JAWS when you use the below HTML sample code from

  <input type="text" name="test1"><br><br>
  <input type="checkbox" name="vehicle" value="Bike">Bike<br><br>
  <input type="radio" name="gender" value="male" checked> Male<br>
  <input type="radio" name="gender" value="female"> Female<br>
  <input type="radio" name="gender" value="other"> Other


Published September 28, 2016 - Updated October 14, 2016

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