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HTML Coding

Target Links

Note: The HTML pages are out-of-date and will not be updated.

The purpose of this guide is to:

return to topWhat are Target Links?

Target links are links to a specific point within a document. Many of the links in web pages are to other documents; however, this is not always efficient or appropriate. With target links you can jump to another location within the current document instead of scrolling to the desired information. target links are also helpful when linking to specific sections of other documents. Instead of linking just to the page, you can link directly to the relevant section.

return to topAre Target Links Right for You?

Target links are very appropriate for some documents but not as appropriate for others. The following list covers some considerations for determining if you are going to use targets links or divide the document into separate documents. Your collective answers will help you determine which approach is best for you.


If the users want to print the document, should they be able to print out just a portion?

the document should be divided into separate files.
No: the document should be kept in one file with target links to aid navigation.

Number of Subtopics

Does the document contain only one topic with no subtopics?

the document should remain as one file, probably without target links.
No: if the document has subtopics, target links will help the user identify the subtopics quickly (rather than scrolling) and move to the topics that are important.


How many screens (or printed pages) does the document contain?

(1-2 screens): the document probably does not need target links and should remain as a single document.
Medium (3-6 screens): the document could be kept as one document; target links would be appropriate if there are several subtopics.
Long (more than 6 screens): the document should be divided into separate files or kept in one file with target links to aid navigation.

return to topTarget Link Code

When writing target links, you first need to identify the section of the document using the <A NAME> command. The links will reference the name by using the pound (#) symbol in the URL.

The following list has the code and examples for naming a section within a document and linking to a specific section.

Naming a Section

The code for the section name is added at the beginning of the section. For example the code naming this section (Target Link Codes) is immediately before the section heading.

Code: <A NAME="section_name">

Linking to a Section in the Current Document

As with links to other documents, the links to a section surround the "cue" for the reader. This location of the cue is influenced by the content and organization of your document.

Code: <A HREF="#section_name">linking text</A>
EXAMPLE: <A HREF="#Intro">Introduction</A>

Linking to a Section in Another Document

When linking to a section in another document you need to include the URL and the name of the section. To avoid confusion, you may want to indicate that the user is going to a section within another document.

Code: <A HREF="URL#section_name">linking text</A>
EXAMPLE: <A HREF="">Copyright</A>

return to topTips for Working with Target Links

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