Ninja Pirate Marksman

    TypeScript icon, indicating that this package has built-in type declarations

    3.0.3 • Public • Published

    Keyboard Testing Library

    An extension of Testing Library that helps simulate keyboard-only users' behaviors

    The Problem

    UI test suites are normally written from the perspective of mouse or touch users. This then misses out on the experiences of keyboard users, making their experiences more susceptible to bugs and regressions.

    This Solution

    This library composes a few primitive user interactions (e.g. simulated key presses) into higher-level actions (e.g. simulating navigation to an element via the keyboard, and then pressing the Enter key to activate it).

    These actions can then be used to conditionally transform an ordinary click-based test suite into a keyboard-oriented one, with minimal changes.


    Install the library as a dev dependency. You may notice a few peer dependency warnings crop up when you do that.

    npm install --save-dev keyboard-testing-library

    If you don't need to provide your own custom handling for key press simulation to use instead of the default shims Testing Library provides, install the following as dev dependencies

    npm install --save-dev @testing-library/user-event
    npm install --save-dev @testing-library/dom

    If you do need to customize them, pay attention to this section below.

    Getting Started

    The details will vary based on the tools you're using, but the core idea is captured in the following Jest-specific snippet, which you'll want to add someplace that will run before each of your test suites (in Jest's case, within a setupFilesAfterEnv script)

    import userEvent from "@testing-library/user-event";
    import keyboardOnlyUserEvent from "keyboard-testing-library/dist/require"; //The "dist/require" is due to Jest's lack of understanding of package export maps as of this writing (see for up-to-date info on this topic)
    if (process.env["USE_KEYBOARD"]) {
        .spyOn(userEvent, "click")

    Then before executing the tests, set the environment variable to a truthy value, for example via a npm script using the cross-env helper library

    "scripts": {
        "test": "jest",
        "test-with-keyboard": "cross-env USE_KEYBOARD=1 npm test"


    You can find more info on the public methods of the library in the index.d.ts file installed alongside the library's source.

    Using Your Own Keypress Simulators

    By default, the library will use JS-based shims taken from @testing-library/user-event to simulate keyboard actions a user can take.

    However, if in your environment you have a way to more realistically simulate keyboard actions (e.g. via the Chrome DevTools Protocol) you can inject those via the injectCustomShims method on the default keyboardOnlyUserEvent export (before any of your tests start).


    • If you're using the ESM distribution, you'll need to be on Node 14.8 or higher (or more generally a runtime that supports top-level await) as the library will use that language feature as part of its initial setup
    • All of the library's keyboard simulation methods are marked as async, so if your test suite is simulating clicks with an ordinary method (as @testing-library/userEvent's "click" method did up until v14) the tests will need to be updated to be async and await on the simulated click method call


    npm i keyboard-testing-library

    DownloadsWeekly Downloads






    Unpacked Size

    59.3 kB

    Total Files


    Last publish


    • grunet