CUED Publications database

Assessing the accessibility of everyday products

Cardoso, C and Clarkson, PJ and Harrison, LJ and Langdon, PM and Keates, S (2001) Assessing the accessibility of everyday products. In: International Conference on Inclusive Design and Communications (INCLUDE 2001), 2001-4-18 to 2001-4-20, London, UK 56-..

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Abstract

If a product is being designed to be genuinely inclusive, then the designers need to be able to assess the level of exclusion of the product that they are working on and to identify possible areas of improvement. To be of practical use, the assessments need to be quick, consistent and repeatable. The aim of this workshop is to invite attendees to participate in the evaluation of a number of everyday objects using an assessment technique being considered by the workshop organisers. The objectives of the workshop include evaluating the effectiveness of the assessment method, evaluating the accessibility of the products being assessed and to suggest revisions to the assessment scales being used. The assessment technique is to be based on the ONS capability measures [1]. This source recognises fourteen capability scales of which seven are particularly pertinent to product evaluation, namely: motion, dexterity, reach and stretch, vision, hearing, communication, and intellectual functioning. Each of these scales ranges from 0 (fully able) through 1 (minimal impairment) to 10 (severe impairment). The attendees will be asked to rate the products on these scales. Clearly the assessed accessibility of the product depends on the assumptions made about the context of use. The attendees will be asked to clearly note the assumptions that they are making about the context in which the product is being assessed. For instance, with a hot water bottle, assumptions have to be made about the availability of hot water and these can affect the overall accessibility rating. The workshop organisers will not specify the context of use as the aim is to identify how assessors would use the assessment method in the real world. The objects being assessed will include items such as remote controls, pill bottles, food packaging, hot water bottles and mobile telephones. the attendees will be encouraged to assess two or more products in detail. Helpers will be on hand to assist and observe the assessments. The assessments will be collated and compared and feedback about the assessment method sought from the attendees. Drawing on a preliminary review of the assessment results, initial conclusions will be presented at the end of the workshop. More detailed analyses will be made available in subsequent proceedings. It is intended that the workshop will provide workshop attendees with an opportunity to perform hands-on assessment of a number everyday products and identify features which are inclusive and those that are not. It is also intended to encourage an appreciation of the capabilities to be considered when evaluating accessibility.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
Uncontrolled Keywords: theme="Inclusive Design", design for all, inclusive design, assessment
Subjects: UNSPECIFIED
Divisions: Div C > Engineering Design
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2014 12:24
Last Modified: 11 Aug 2014 01:11
DOI:

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