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Title: Design for inclusivity : assessing the accessibility of everyday products
Author: Cardoso, C. M. C.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2006
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This research addresses the improvement of accessibility methods during the design process when real end-users are not readily available. Time, cost and logistical constraints imposed upon typical design projects prevent many designers form working directly with end-users. Consequently, a large number of designers resort to intuitive and informal (Self-observation) approaches when evaluating the cease of use of the designs they create. This results in design solutions that often cause ‘avoidable’ levels of discomfort, or even exclusion, to the growing older adult population and people with physical and psychological impairments. This research set out to investigate ways of influencing designers’ Self-observation approaches to accessibility evaluations. Two new supplementary assessment methods have been developed during the implementation of three studies. Each of these comprised the participation of real users and designers interacting with several everyday products. The methods introduced to the group of designers aimed at prompting them to perform more objective and informed accessibility assessments of everyday products. The research showed that in general the new methods enabled designers to find a significant number of accessibility problems, which had been previously overlooked during informal self-observation evaluations. Most of these problems had also been identified by the real end-users taking part in the studies. This thesis will present the outcomes of the complete research project, concluding with the presentation of further work, which could facilitate the broadening of the proposed tools to better suit the specific assessment requirements of practising designers.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available