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JavaScript AJAX Basics Programming AJAX AJAX Callbacks

Why is this script element not at the end of the body tag?

I noticed that the code Dave is writing has the script element outside the body. Does anybody know the reason for that? We have learned that best practice for placing the JS code is at the end of the body tag. And I have even experienced issues if with my code when I didn't follow this advice. This is why I was wondering about his positioning.

  <meta charset="utf-8">
  <link href='//fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Varela+Round' rel='stylesheet' type='text/css'>
  <link rel="stylesheet" href="css/main.css">
  <title>AJAX with JavaScript</title>
    let xhr = new XMLHttpRequest();
    xhr.onreadystatechange = function () {
      if (xhr.readyState === 4) {
        document.getElementById('ajax').innerHTML = xhr.responseText;      
    xhr.open('GET', 'sidebar.html');
    function sendAJAX() {
      document.getElementById('load').style.display = 'none';

  <div class="grid-container centered">
    <div class="grid-100">
      <div class="contained">
        <div class="grid-100">
          <div class="heading">
            <h1>Bring on the AJAX</h1>
            <button id="load" onclick="sendAJAX()">Bring it to me!</button>
          <div id="ajax">


2 Answers

Steven Parker
Steven Parker
220,426 Points

Scripts that only load libraries, define functions, or establish data resources can be safely loaded in the "head" section of the page, and it is a common practice to do so.

But any script that interacts with the DOM should always be loaded as the last thing in the "body" section, and as you have seen can create errors if it is loaded before the page elements that it references.

This script is an example of the first kind since it defines functions that don't run until the page button is clicked.

Thank you Steven! I got confused for a second there. Sometimes I feel that I don't have full knowledge of where it's best to place some lines of code. But your explanation makes a lot of sense.