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Universal and Accessible Design Principles
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Universal and Accessible Design Principles

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  1. Universal and Accessible Design Principles

  2. Scope of the Discussion • “universal design” and "accessible design" are often used interchangeably • Both terms focus on designing products and services so that as many people, with as broad a spectrum of abilities as possible, can use them. • Yet "accessible design" and "accessibility" have taken on legal meanings that force a distinction to be drawn between universal and accessible design. • In essence, accessible design is mandated by law while universal design is not. • This presentation focuses on universal design.

  3. Example Universal design principles embody accessible design principles. However, accessible design may not be universal design. For Example: This restaurant has the mandated number of handicapped parking spaces and a handicapped entrance. However, theparking is in the back of the building by the garbage. The handicapped entranceis near the handicapped parking through the kitchen. These arrangements satisfy the legal requirementsfor accessible design, butdo not exemplify universal design. Parking space Handicapped Entrance

  4. Goals • Goals: • Present the principles of universal design • Provide a rational for each principle • Provide examples for each principle • Promote the principles so designers will be inclined to utilize them

  5. Principles • Entities designed from a universal design perspective are: • Equitable • Ergonomically Sound • Perceptible • Cognitively Sound • Flexible • Error-Managed (Proofed) • Efficient • Stable and Predictable

  6. Equitable Equitable: Universally designed entities should be equitable in that the entities should provide the same means of use for all users: identical whenever possible; equivalent when not. The products and processes should avoid segregating or stigmatizing any users, making the design appealing to all users.

  7. Equitable Curb cuts eliminate discrimination and stigmatization. Everyone is better served: • people in wheelchairs • people riding bicycles • people pushing baby strollers • people who have trouble with stairs

  8. Equitable Ramps eliminate discrimination and stigmatization. • Everyone is better served: • people in wheelchairs • people who have trouble with stairs

  9. Equitable Image Stabilizing Binoculars provide the same means of use for all users. • Microcomputer technology stabilizes the image for : • people who are tired • people with arthritis • people with neuro-muscular disabilities

  10. Ergonomically Sound Ergonomically Sound: The physical demands associated with the use of an entity must be within acceptable limits for a wide range of users.

  11. Ergonomically Sound Entrances and Corridors • entrance ramps must not be so steep that wheelchair users cannot move themselves (or be pushed) up the ramp • appropriate space for easy wheelchair navigation must be provided

  12. Ergonomically Sound Doors • Door knobs should be placed so that a door without an automatic opener can be opened by a person in a wheelchair. • The force required to open a door should allow a wide range of people to physically open the door.

  13. Ergonomically Sound Harmful and unnecessary lifting and carrying should be avoided.

  14. Perceptible Perceptible: Designed entities must effectively communicate necessary information to the user, regardless of ambient conditions or the user's sensory abilities. Illustration taken fromhttp://www.visualexpert.com/Resources/background.html

  15. Perceptible

  16. Perceptible This device uses 10 different audible sounds. They need to be perceptible to be functional.

  17. Perceptible Emergency warning systems must be perceptible by as many people as possible. • Sounds • loud • attention-getting pitch alternating intensity/pitch • Lights • bright • vivid • usually flashing

  18. Cognitively Sound Cognitively Sound: The cognitive demands of designed entities must be within acceptable limits for a wide range of users. Cognitive demands include, but are not limited to: memory requirements, task complexity, language complexity, and reaction times. Designers need to build knowledge into the environment, product, or process.

  19. Cognitively Sound Large buildings house many departments, so designers must provide cognitive supports to help people navigate. • Signage • Color-coding schemes and path markers • International icons for toilets, restaurants,hospitals, etc.

  20. Cognitively Sound International icons allow people of differing nationalities, people who cannot read, and people who are cognitively impaired to negotiate complex environments.

  21. Cognitively Sound TASK STRUCTURE should be appropriate to the task – neither too simple (leading to boredom) nor complex (leading to error and frustration). Instructions for setting the clock of a phone answering system.

  22. Cognitively Sound Assembly instructions for a chest of drawers. • Clear • Concise • Uses pictures This is from a Danish companythat distributes internationally.

  23. Cognitively Sound MATERIALS must support different learning styles and human intelligences. Reading, performing mathematical operations, or memorizing long sequences of actions or codes places constraints on who can perform a job.

  24. Cognitively Sound • Analyzing the cognitive demands of jobs is more difficult than analyzing physical activity, especially because workers often develop complex strategies to hide their inabilities. • Common problems • Workers who cannot read • Workers who are color blind • Workers who cannot remember code or action sequences • Cognitive issue(s) indicators • increased errors • decreased productivity • other symptomatic indicators

  25. Flexible Flexible: Designing flexibility into an entity increases the likelihood that the products, systems, and environments can be used and experienced by people of all abilities, to the greatest extent possible, without adaptations.

  26. Flexible The automotive industry has led the way in terms of flexible design. Vehicles provide : • adjustable seats • adjustable steering wheels • adjustable floor pedal positioning • adjustable mirror positions • adjustable temperature • adjustable lights for different areas of the vehicle • adjustable distribution and intensity of music

  27. Flexible Flexibility needs to be built into the workplace and the interface between the worker and the job process. Text Telephone TTY Braille Speakerphone

  28. Flexible Agile Devices and Systems Provide Flexibility Adjustable seating and positioning

  29. Flexible • Flexibility arises from many sources: • times for starting and finishing a job • tempo of the work • the sequencing of different parts of the job • conditions for participating in the work activity • time and location where the work will occur • technology for participating in various aspects of the job • delivery channels for inventory • materials / supplies

  30. Error Managed (Error Proofed) Error Managed (Error Proofed): Entities must be designed so that they support doing the right thing. It is important to create a design wherein errors can be managed. This applies to consumers, workers, and students.

  31. Error Managed (Error Proofed) • Error Proofing Strategies: • Do not allow the user to make an error.Examples: a) Microwave oven stops when the door is opened. b) Car will not start unless gear in park/neutral. • Provide a warning that an error has or will occur.Examples: a) A buzzer sounds if car key is left in ignition when car door is opened. b) Warning display for car high engine temperature. • Provide easy way to correct errors if they occur. Examples: a) Microsoft Windows use of the <ctrl>z key stroke. b) Undo option in word processor edit features.

  32. Error Managed (Error Proofed) • Designers strive to eliminate errors when consumers use their products and when workers manufacture and assemble products in a production system. EXAMPLE: Diesel fuel nozzle too large for unleaded gas tank opening. NoteColor Coding

  33. Error Managed (Error Proofed) Ignition Keys Steering Wheel Door Locks Lights • Warning Lights • Electrical • Temperature • Gas • Door Open • Seat Belts Gear Shift Today’s cars exhibit a host of error proofing features.

  34. Error Managed (Error Proofed) • When doors open: • The microwave oven turns off • The washer stops • The dryer stops

  35. Error Managed (Error Proofed) • In education, where people learn by making mistakes, elements of the process not critical to the learning objectives should be error-proofed. Errors in the process segment associated with the educational objectives should be managed so as to facilitate the educational process.

  36. Error Managed (Error Proofed) Error-Proof Setup and Preparation Error-Proof End Activity Transition & Clean Up Manage Errors

  37. Error Managed (Error Proofed) • Error-proofing is a core strategy for achieving the objectives associated with lean production and quality control programs. • For workers without disabilities, the error-proofing strategies fight boredom, fatigue, and other distractions. • For individuals with disabilities, the error-proofing strategies provide an essential dialogue between the job and person, enabling the person to actually perform the job.

  38. Efficient (Muda Elimination) Efficient (Muda Elimination) - Designed entities need to be efficient in that they have reduced as much of the non-value added activities as possible and/or reasonable. In kaizen terms one would say muda elimination (Imai, 1997). Muda means waste in Japanese; however, “the implications of the word include anything or any activity that does not add value.”(Imai, 1997)

  39. Efficient (Muda Elimination) • Most discussions of universal design do not include efficiency / muda elimination. • Muda elimination is a powerful universal design concept that touches on issues not raised by more typical discussions of universal design. • >non-value added activities such as waiting>slow, effortful operations>the need to consistently re-check actions>tedious procedures • These non-value added activities not only frustrate and antagonize most users, but also render the products unusable for those with a low tolerance for frustration.

  40. Efficient (Muda Elimination) Reducing non-value added activity complements and in some cases overlaps the other universal design principles. For example, by reducing both errors and the physical demands of a job (lifting, transporting), non-value added job components are also reduced.

  41. Efficient (Muda Elimination) Viewed as the elimination of any thing or any activity that does not add value, muda elimination has potential utility for consumer product design. • Examples of non-value added activity: • Waiting for a service provider: telephone customer service cue emergency room service cue • Making errors or having to recheck actions due to wrong or unclear operating instructions in user manuals or assembly instructions. • Excessive system configuration time. • Having to re-enter all information in a computer form if only one item needs to be changed. • A large collection of features and options that complicate product operations and are rarely or never used.

  42. Efficient (Muda Elimination) Standardized work procedures & Work Place Organization work to reduce non-value activities. A French term meaningeverything in its place – used by chefs and a coreconcept in their training. Reduce time spent searching for things, or figuring outwhat or how to do something.

  43. Stable and Predictable Stable and Predictable: Designed entities need to be stable and predictable in that users can expect performance that supports the desired activity. While each entity presents unique requirements for stability and predictability, a common theme across all designed entities is the need to reduce the inherent variability of using the entity.

  44. Stable and Predictable Buildings and facilities • Temperature • Light • Noise • Electrical Power Elevators, escalators, and all infrastructure systems should be reliable. The common cause variability of these elements should be very low, essentially zero.

  45. Stable and Predictable Self-managing features that help reduce common cause variability and create more stable, predictable environments for everyone: • workplace organization • standardized work procedures • utilizing visual controls


  47. Grooks 4, P Hein, Doubleday & Company, Garden City, N.Y. 1972

  48. Synergisms among the Universal Design Principles

  49. Synergisms among the Universal Design Principles • Universal design principles work synergistically and are best employed as part of a coherent design strategy. • Equitability • Ergonomic soundness • Perceptibility • Cognitive soundness • Error management • Flexibility • Efficiency • Stability and predictability

  50. Synergisms among the Universal Design Principles TASK: Read the dials and verify correct operation based on meter readings. The acceptable level is marked. Much less error prone. Least cognitively Demanding. Rotate meter dial – vertical alignment means acceptable. Also use markers. Read & Interpret Very error prone.