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Setting the DocType

DocType declarations are troublesome to memorize, and often essential to include in your document to ensure the browser properly renders your content. The doctype() view helper allows you to use simple string mnemonics to specify the desired DocType; additionally, other helpers will query the doctype() helper to ensure the output generated conforms with the requested DocType.

As an example, if you want to use the XHTML1 Strict DTD, you can simply specify:


Among the other available mnemonics, you'll find these common types:


XHTML 1.0 Strict


XHTML 1.0 Transitional


HTML 4.01 Strict


HTML 4.01 Loose



You can assign the type and render the declaration in a single call:

echo $this->doctype('XHTML1_STRICT');

However, the better approach is to assign the type in your bootstrap, and then render it in your layout. Try adding the following to your bootstrap class:

class Bootstrap extends Zend_Application_Bootstrap_Bootstrap
    protected function _initDocType()
        $view = $this->getResource('View');

Then, in your layout script, simply echo() the helper at the top of the file:

<?php echo $this->doctype() ?>
    <!-- ... -->

This will ensure that your DocType-aware view helpers render the appropriate markup, ensure that the type is set well before the layout is rendered, and provide a single location to change the DocType.

Zend Framework