Which symbols are suitable to indicate that something is "verified" or simply correct? As far as i know, a (green) tick is the obvious choice. An alternative is a thumbs up-icon which seems to be widely understood.

In short, these are the popular ways to show correctness afaik:

  • green check mark
  • thumbs up
  • smiley
  • green borders around a input field
  • writing out words like "correct", "ok" etc.

What are alternative ways to show, that some "stuff" is correct? Notice that i don't want to indicate that some progress has been made.

I'm about to build a UI where i need to indicate for two distinct things, that they are correct. But i don't want to use the same kind of symbol for these different functionalities. Maybe there are different ways to do it, not icon based?!


To be more specific, i want to give feedback after a user solved a question via typing text in a textfield. There are no UI elements being enabled or disabled by the actions of the user. I just wan't to to inform the user if his answer was correct or not.

Problem: The question itself asked can be verified or not. These are the two distinct kinds of correctness i'am talking about.

More general advice how to handle this is also appreciated.

  • 1
    This is not a "what is an icon meaning [x]" question. There are other ways to effectively communicate visually with a user besides just icons. Please consider that this question might be within the scope of this site before just seeing the word "icon" and voting to close as a knee-jerk reaction. Jun 9 '17 at 21:07
  • I agree with @maxathousand , sometimes I feel this "let's close everything" trend is getting out of hand, this question is clearly within UX.SE's scope
    – Devin
    Jun 9 '17 at 21:17
  • @rinderwahn When you say "to show that some 'stuff' is correct", what kind of "verification" are you talking about? For example, "verifying" a person's address is valid is pretty different than "verifying" that a user has permission to perform an action (this term is often used loosely in everyday speech). Could you expand on your use case? What kinds of "two distinct things" and what does "correct" mean? What are the "different functionalities" you mention? This all could have an impact on what kind of feedback makes the most sense. Jun 9 '17 at 21:20
  • @maxathousand: "For example, 'verifying' a person's address is valid is pretty different than 'verifying' that a user has permission to perform an action" - is it? In both cases, it seems to me, we are talking about a boolean result, which indicates whether the verification was successful within the margin of error (i.e. how sure we can be about the verification result) imposed by the subject matter. Jun 9 '17 at 21:30
  • 1
    @O.R.Mapper Well, yes, from an implementation point of view, you're right. However, I'm talking about the user's point of view. These boolean results look pretty different--an invalid address might highlight an input field in red and/or provide an error message, while the lack of permissions might disable a button and provide a helpful tooltip explaining their permissions are not sufficient. They both are ways of showing something is wrong, but they communicate it very differently to the user. Jun 9 '17 at 21:35

It's likely not a preferred choice since it takes up more real estate, isn't internationalized, and would take more cognition, but you could also print the word:

enter image description here

  • This could work since i want to give feedback after a user answered a question. Indeed it's not chic, but it would do the job.
    – nichoio
    Jun 10 '17 at 11:18

Not sure I fully understand your scenario, but I would attach a keyup listener to the input field using JavaScript, and on each keyup, check the answer for correctness. If it's not correct, do nothing. If it is correct, set the border color of the input field to green, and optionally display a green check mark to the left or right of it, depending on how your UI is set up.

  • Ofc this would be work. It's the obvious way to do it. But that's not the whole problem. The actual problem is, that on the very same page, i need an additional indicator for correctness, but in a different context. I'm simply looking for other universally accepted ui elements to show "this one is correct/reliable/verified...". If i use a check mark here, what other kind of symbol, text etc. can i use to tag an other piece of information as correct? I don't want to use the same symbol in a different context.
    – nichoio
    Jun 10 '17 at 14:07

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