Block Editor Keyboard Shortcuts in WordPress 5.4

WordPress 5.4 introduces a new package called @wordpress/keyboard-shortcuts to centralize the registration/removal and documentation of the available keyboard shortcuts in the blockBlock Block is the abstract term used to describe units of markup that, composed together, form the content or layout of a webpage using the WordPress editor. The idea combines concepts of what in the past may have achieved with shortcodes, custom HTML, and embed discovery into a single consistent API and user experience. editor screen.

Registering shortcuts

You should register keyboard shortcuts when you load the screen/pluginPlugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the Plugin Directory or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party for the first time, by calling the registerShortcut action. 'core/keyboard-shortcuts' ).registerShortcut( {
	// Shortcut name (identifier)
	name: 'plugin/shortcut-name',

 	// Catergory (global, block or selection)
	category: 'block',

	// Description 
	description: 'Short description of your shortcut.',

	// The key combination used to trigger the shortcut
	// Could be just a single character or a character with
	// a modifier.
	keyCombination: {
		modifier: 'primaryAlt',
		character: 't',

	// Some shortcuts can be triggered using several 
	// key combination, the aliases array is used to define
	// the alternative combinations
	aliases: [
			modifier: 'primary',
			character: 'i',
} );

Registering a shortcut automatically adds it to the keyboard shortcuts help modal, where users can find it.

Implementing the keyboard shortcut behavior

The @wordpress/keyboard-shortcuts package also provides the useShortcut ReactReact React is a JavaScript library that makes it easy to reason about, construct, and maintain stateless and stateful user interfaces. hook to define the behavior triggered by the keyboard shortcuts.

import { useShortcut } from '@wordpress/keyboard-shortcuts';
import { useCallback } from '@wordpress/element';

const MyComponent = () => {
		// Shortcut name

		// Shortcut callback
			( event ) => {
				// Do something when the keyboard 
				// shortcut is triggered

Using this React hook instead of a custom implementation comes with a few advantages:

  • If the shortcut is unregistered by a third-party plugin, the callback is just ignored.
  • The shortcut key combination can be modified at runtime and the callback will still be called properly.

Removing existing shortcuts

Registered shortcuts can also be unregistered (and potentially replaced) by third-party plugins 'core/keyboard-shortcuts' ).unregisterShortcut(

Next steps

In the next releases, this package will also let you offer a centralized UIUI User interface to modify the keyboard shortcuts per user.

#5-4, #accessibility, #block-editor, #dev-notes