The <topichead> element provides a title-only entry in a navigation map, which should appear as a heading when the map is rendered as a table of contents. In print contexts it should also appear as a heading in the rendered content.

Beginning with DITA 1.2, the navtitle can be specified by using a <navtitle> element within the <topicmeta> element, so the <topichead> element no longer requires the @navtitle attribute. In order to ensure backward compatibility with earlier versions of DITA, the new <navtitle> element is not required. However, a <topichead> element must contain either a @navtitle attribute or a <topicmeta> element that contains a <navtitle> element. DITA processors SHOULD generate a warning if a navigation title is not specified.

Content models

See appendix for information about this element in OASIS document type shells.


+ map/topicref mapgroup-d/topichead


Note that in the following example, the first <topichead> element uses a <navtitle> element to provide the title, while the second <topichead> element uses a @navtitle attribute. This is only to illustrate that both uses are valid; in general, the element is preferred over the attribute.

    <topicref href="eniac.dita"/>
    <topicref href="system360.dita"/>
    <topicref href="pdp8.dita"/>
  <topichead navtitle="Books">
    <topicref href="hardback.dita"/>
    <topicref href="paperback.dita"/>


The following attributes are available on this element: Universal attribute group, Attributes common to many map elements, @navtitle and @copy-to from Topicref element attributes group, and outputclass. Although @locktitle is available as part of Attributes common to many map elements, it has no defined purpose for this element.

The @scope, @format, and @type attributes from Link relationship attribute group are also available.

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