I'm currently building a user enrollment form and I'm wondering what peoples' thoughts are on conditionally firing inline validation on blur based on a "dirty" field -- one that's received a keyboard input and/or value change since the form was engaged with.

The scenario I'm interested in avoiding is having multiple inputs in a warning state. I tend to have a low attention span when engaging with forms and like to click in and out of them just to keep my pointer busy, so this is something that I come across with my own usage of the web.

Dirty checking is available with Angular (at least in 1.x which I've worked with), but would have to be built in to any other frameworks.

  • Is dirty checking an input on blur before validation a good practice?
  • Is it as big of a deal as I'm thinking it is?
  • Is triggering validation without dirty checking as a user clicks/tabs through forms without entering considered "good enough"?

1 Answer 1


Wait for meaningful interaction

Validate fields (and provide feedback to users) only after they've attempted to enter something. In the case of clicking / tapping / tabbing through fields, you would just put unnecessary strain on the system to tell the user what they already know: "you didn't do anything".

Even in the case of partially entered fields, you'll want to put a slight delay before alerting them to failure (600+ ms after the first character or on blur). Validation alerts should be fairly prominent, which means it's not something you want to trigger lightly.


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