Print: Section 1.2

What We Know About Users with Limited Literacy Skills

1.2 Understanding navigation

When navigating a website, users with limited literacy skills tend to:

  • Get distracted by extra words and elements of a website (like links and icons)3,11
  • Navigate in a linear fashion and backtrack frequently4,10
  • Choose the first answer they find, without checking if it’s correct—and have a hard time telling the difference between high- and low-quality information3,10,12
  • Have trouble recovering from mistakes10

When reading, users with limited literacy skills focus on the center of the screen. Once they shift their focus from the navigation to the center of the screen, they’re unlikely to look back to the navigation to solve a problem or change course if the content isn’t meeting their needs.10,13