moderated Re: application mode

David Goldfield <david.goldfield@...>


There is no need to apologize as this is a good question as this is something that many users will encounter with no explanation as to why it is happening. I'm going to paste a response to this question that I found from the JFW list from four years ago from Aaron Page, as I do like his explanation. I'll just add that pressing the PC cursor key twice is an easier way to exit application mode than pressing insert-z twice, which is what he learned to do at the time of his response. Here is his message.

Hi Ann,

Application Mode is a mode that JAWS will enter when it begins to interact with a web application. Application Mode is designed to treat the web application as if it were a typical Windows-based program, and not as a web page. The advantage to this is that application-specific keyboard shortcuts will work without the need to use the JAWS pass-through, the disadvantage is that typical JAWS keyboard shortcuts (i.e. "H" for headings, "B" for buttons) will not work as these keystrokes are now being passed through JAWS to the application.

When using web applications that trigger JAWS' Application Mode, it is usually very helpful to learn keyboard shortcuts that are specific to the application in order to effectively navigate and use the application. You should also have some success (if the application is accessible) navigating the web application using tab and the arrow keys.

You can usually tell that you are entering an application as JAWS will announce "Application", and upon pressing Enter you should hear JAWS beep as if it just entered a form. The most frustrating thing about application mode (in my opinion) is the difficulty in getting back out of the application. I usually will press Insert+Z to set the Virtual PC Cursor to off, and then press Insert+Z again to turn the Virtual PC Cursor back on. After turning off and back on the Virtual PC Cursor you should again be able to use normal JAWS keyboard shortcuts. If anyone on-list knows a better way to exit applications mode, I would love to hear it.

You can practice using applications mode on this page: If you press "R" to move through the regions you will encounter the application region, at which point you can press Enter to enter applications mode and begin interacting with the application. This example is an HTML text editor called TinyMCE, which is a commonly used editor that uses an application region and is relatively accessible.

Hope this helps!

Aaron M. Page, B.S.
EIT Accessibility Specialist
Accessible Technology Services, University of Montana

David Goldfield,
Blindness Assistive Technology Specialist
JAWS Certified, 2019
On 4/18/2020 10:44 AM, Jessica D wrote:

My apologies, but what's "application mode?" 
I've never heard of it until now. 


On Apr 18, 2020, at 10:39 AM, David Goldfield <david.goldfield@...> wrote:

 >If I understand your question correctly, I get out of applications mode by pressing the PC cursor twice quickly.That is exactly right.

That is exactly correct. Pressing the PC cursor key twice quickly reactivates either the PC cursor or the virtual cursor. Most likely it will be the virtual cursor assuming this is happening on a Web page.


From: <> On Behalf Of Justin Williams
Sent: Saturday, April 18, 2020 3:52 AM
Subject: application mode


Had an issue today with application mode.


I was uploading a file, and when I got done with it, I couldn't get out of application mode.


Not to mention, that it didn't tell me whether I was uploading a resume, a reference, or a cover letter.


I used rout jaws to pc to arrow around some, then used rooted pc to jaws to break out of it.


Also, I found that hitting enter twice, and or pulling up the links list and selecting, move to link worked.


However, I was wondering if any of you had a better way of working with that…







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