I'm just wondering what causes Panels Pages (or cTools pages? Never figured out which is which) to output some panel panes in a <section> html tag wrapper, and output the other panel panes in a <div> html tag wrapper?

I would prefer it if they were one or the other, but not both. So I wanted to understand and find out the reason so I could potentially make it consistent.

Theme I use: AdaptiveTheme (Custom Sub-theme with minimal configurations and changes)

Panels "Variant" Layout: AT One Column (Responsive single column panel layout, AdaptiveTheme core)

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  • The "pages" concept comes from the module "Page manager", which is a part of ctools. Panels however is usually used to render them. So you could say both "Panels Pages" or "cTools pages", but they would mean slightly different things. :)
    – Letharion
    Commented Jan 21, 2014 at 22:44

1 Answer 1


To the best of my knowledge, Panels contains no instances of <section>. This comes entirely from your theme.

Specifically, I believe it's from at_core/templates/panels-pane.tpl.php which contains the following:

 * Adaptivetheme variables:
 * - $is_mobile: Bool, requires the Browscap module to return TRUE for mobile
 *   devices. Use to test for a mobile context.
 * - $tag: top level wrapper element, section or div.

followed by

 <<?php print $tag . $attributes . $id; ?>>

The relevant logic appears to be

 * Preprocess variables for panels_pane.tpl.php
function adaptivetheme_preprocess_panels_pane(&$vars) {
  // Top level wrapper
  $vars['tag'] = $vars['title'] ? 'section' : 'div';
  • So it depends if the pane has a title or not, and that causes it to output either <section> or <div>. Weird logic, doesn't make any sense to me in terms of semantics. Thanks.
    – Beebee
    Commented Jan 22, 2014 at 9:25
  • It does depend on that yes, but that's just adaptive's logic. Panels itself doesn't care, and you are of course free to override the behavior.
    – Letharion
    Commented Jan 22, 2014 at 9:55

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