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Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales

Yan Wu Orcid Logo, Stephen Lindsay Orcid Logo, Leighton Evans Orcid Logo, Martin Porcheron Orcid Logo, Leigh Clark Orcid Logo, Rhys Jones Orcid Logo

Swansea University Authors: Yan Wu Orcid Logo, Stephen Lindsay Orcid Logo, Leighton Evans Orcid Logo, Martin Porcheron Orcid Logo, Leigh Clark Orcid Logo, Rhys Jones Orcid Logo

Abstract

The aim of this research is to provide a detailed examination of visually impaired community’s access to and usage of digital technology, focusing on the effectiveness of training in reducing digital skill gaps and current challenges associated with accessibility of devices, software and application...

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Published: RNIB 2021
URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa58304
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In partnership with RNIB, we run three focus groups between 14&#x2013;22 May 2018 as part of a research project based at Swansea University, funded by the Challenging Human Environments and Research Impact for a Sustainable and Healthy Digital Economy Centre (CHERISH-DE). By conducting empirical research with sight-impaired users, we aim to provide a first-hand account of the user experience to inform digital inclusivity policy. Specifically, we will firstly assess support networks provided to sight-impaired users - in particular, local support group and Welsh Government funded projects including digital communities in this report. In addition, we will investigate barriers faced by sight impaired users to the full use of accessible features across devices, software and applications. Finally, through experimental interactions with Amazon Alexa and Google Duplex, we aim to develop consumer-led recommendations to improve inclusive technology.Our research reveals the importance of digital trainings in disseminating knowledge, implementing changes, triggering bottom-up approach of peer learning and self-learning. For the future, support towards setting up devices and training on online security and data protection are crucial in involving and protecting vulnerable users. In a highly competitive market, the tech industry and service industry tend to focus on the most active and affluent users. While sensory impaired users are overlooked in this market-driven and technology-oriented approach, accessibility features are often treated as add-ons to &#x2018;fix&#x2019; any potential problems if needs must, resulting in incompatibility in operating systems, web browsers, mobile devices, and platforms. Based on the analysis of our focus group data, we put forward recommendations on four key topics: web/app accessibility; better integration and standardisation; more user participation in technology development; and continuous support and training towards the sight impaired community. In additional to recommending better standardisation through adherence to, development and refinement of appropriate design guidelines and best practice, we also encourage a bottom-up approach for web and app accessibility guidelines. Involving users into the process of technology design and development would assure the technology capacity is tailored around the need of the user. 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spelling 2021-11-10T17:34:45.2799146 v2 58304 2021-10-12 Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales fcb0b08dd7afa00f6899a02d4cb66fff 0000-0002-5741-6862 Yan Wu Yan Wu true false 0e6c28093df4874b4263b328d7817e09 0000-0001-6063-3676 Stephen Lindsay Stephen Lindsay true false cc05810f3465ddddd6814e131f4e9a79 0000-0002-6875-6301 Leighton Evans Leighton Evans true false d9de398c04c0b443d547d455782d5de5 0000-0003-3814-7174 Martin Porcheron Martin Porcheron true false 004ef41b90854a57a498549a462f13a0 0000-0002-9237-1057 Leigh Clark Leigh Clark true false 896a6aacfd217fb099481697a43bfe80 0000-0003-3928-4701 Rhys Jones Rhys Jones true false 2021-10-12 AMED The aim of this research is to provide a detailed examination of visually impaired community’s access to and usage of digital technology, focusing on the effectiveness of training in reducing digital skill gaps and current challenges associated with accessibility of devices, software and applications. In partnership with RNIB, we run three focus groups between 14–22 May 2018 as part of a research project based at Swansea University, funded by the Challenging Human Environments and Research Impact for a Sustainable and Healthy Digital Economy Centre (CHERISH-DE). By conducting empirical research with sight-impaired users, we aim to provide a first-hand account of the user experience to inform digital inclusivity policy. Specifically, we will firstly assess support networks provided to sight-impaired users - in particular, local support group and Welsh Government funded projects including digital communities in this report. In addition, we will investigate barriers faced by sight impaired users to the full use of accessible features across devices, software and applications. Finally, through experimental interactions with Amazon Alexa and Google Duplex, we aim to develop consumer-led recommendations to improve inclusive technology.Our research reveals the importance of digital trainings in disseminating knowledge, implementing changes, triggering bottom-up approach of peer learning and self-learning. For the future, support towards setting up devices and training on online security and data protection are crucial in involving and protecting vulnerable users. In a highly competitive market, the tech industry and service industry tend to focus on the most active and affluent users. While sensory impaired users are overlooked in this market-driven and technology-oriented approach, accessibility features are often treated as add-ons to ‘fix’ any potential problems if needs must, resulting in incompatibility in operating systems, web browsers, mobile devices, and platforms. Based on the analysis of our focus group data, we put forward recommendations on four key topics: web/app accessibility; better integration and standardisation; more user participation in technology development; and continuous support and training towards the sight impaired community. In additional to recommending better standardisation through adherence to, development and refinement of appropriate design guidelines and best practice, we also encourage a bottom-up approach for web and app accessibility guidelines. Involving users into the process of technology design and development would assure the technology capacity is tailored around the need of the user. Ultimately, inclusive design is to improve the quality of life for everyone, whatever their ability. ResearchReportExternalBody RNIB 14 10 2021 2021-10-14 COLLEGE NANME Media COLLEGE CODE AMED Swansea University Not Required Challenging Human Environments and Research Impact for a Sustainable and Healthy Digital Economy Centre (CHERISH-DE) 46E 2021-11-10T17:34:45.2799146 2021-10-12T23:41:28.6221115 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences School of Culture and Communication - Media, Communications, Journalism and PR Yan Wu 0000-0002-5741-6862 1 Stephen Lindsay 0000-0001-6063-3676 2 Leighton Evans 0000-0002-6875-6301 3 Martin Porcheron 0000-0003-3814-7174 4 Leigh Clark 0000-0002-9237-1057 5 Rhys Jones 0000-0003-3928-4701 6 58304__21157__93f1607f96cf456f900bd4c95ad64cb3.pdf ENABLING DIGITAL FIRST- A case study of sight-impaired users in Wales .pdf 2021-10-12T23:59:46.9923157 Output 244315 application/pdf Author's Original true false eng 91 Yan Wu 0000-0002-5741-6862 y.wu@swansea.ac.uk false 4 true
title Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales
spellingShingle Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales
Yan Wu
Stephen Lindsay
Leighton Evans
Martin Porcheron
Leigh Clark
Rhys Jones
title_short Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales
title_full Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales
title_fullStr Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales
title_full_unstemmed Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales
title_sort Enabling Digital First: A Case Study of Sight-Impaired Users in Wales
author_id_str_mv fcb0b08dd7afa00f6899a02d4cb66fff
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author_id_fullname_str_mv fcb0b08dd7afa00f6899a02d4cb66fff_***_Yan Wu
0e6c28093df4874b4263b328d7817e09_***_Stephen Lindsay
cc05810f3465ddddd6814e131f4e9a79_***_Leighton Evans
d9de398c04c0b443d547d455782d5de5_***_Martin Porcheron
004ef41b90854a57a498549a462f13a0_***_Leigh Clark
896a6aacfd217fb099481697a43bfe80_***_Rhys Jones
author Yan Wu
Stephen Lindsay
Leighton Evans
Martin Porcheron
Leigh Clark
Rhys Jones
author2 Yan Wu
Stephen Lindsay
Leighton Evans
Martin Porcheron
Leigh Clark
Rhys Jones
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publishDate 2021
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publisher RNIB
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description The aim of this research is to provide a detailed examination of visually impaired community’s access to and usage of digital technology, focusing on the effectiveness of training in reducing digital skill gaps and current challenges associated with accessibility of devices, software and applications. In partnership with RNIB, we run three focus groups between 14–22 May 2018 as part of a research project based at Swansea University, funded by the Challenging Human Environments and Research Impact for a Sustainable and Healthy Digital Economy Centre (CHERISH-DE). By conducting empirical research with sight-impaired users, we aim to provide a first-hand account of the user experience to inform digital inclusivity policy. Specifically, we will firstly assess support networks provided to sight-impaired users - in particular, local support group and Welsh Government funded projects including digital communities in this report. In addition, we will investigate barriers faced by sight impaired users to the full use of accessible features across devices, software and applications. Finally, through experimental interactions with Amazon Alexa and Google Duplex, we aim to develop consumer-led recommendations to improve inclusive technology.Our research reveals the importance of digital trainings in disseminating knowledge, implementing changes, triggering bottom-up approach of peer learning and self-learning. For the future, support towards setting up devices and training on online security and data protection are crucial in involving and protecting vulnerable users. In a highly competitive market, the tech industry and service industry tend to focus on the most active and affluent users. While sensory impaired users are overlooked in this market-driven and technology-oriented approach, accessibility features are often treated as add-ons to ‘fix’ any potential problems if needs must, resulting in incompatibility in operating systems, web browsers, mobile devices, and platforms. Based on the analysis of our focus group data, we put forward recommendations on four key topics: web/app accessibility; better integration and standardisation; more user participation in technology development; and continuous support and training towards the sight impaired community. In additional to recommending better standardisation through adherence to, development and refinement of appropriate design guidelines and best practice, we also encourage a bottom-up approach for web and app accessibility guidelines. Involving users into the process of technology design and development would assure the technology capacity is tailored around the need of the user. Ultimately, inclusive design is to improve the quality of life for everyone, whatever their ability.
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