Research into Telecommunications Options for People with Physical Disabilities
Assistive Technology Volume 19, Number 2, ISSN 1040-0435
People with a disability do not have equitable access to the modern telecommunication medium. Many experience difficulty typing, handling the phone, dialing, or answering calls. For those who are unable to speak, the only option is to type messages using whatever functional control site exists on their body. The provision of accessible mobile phones for people with disabilities can significantly improve their quality of life through an increased range of accessible activities, and mobile phones can improve their independence, safety, security and self-esteem. This research was aimed at providing practical ways for people with a disability to participate in the extensive community of home and mobile phone users. The outcomes of 10 participants taking part in the evaluation and trial of off-the-shelf telecommunication options are presented. Nine out of 10 participants showed high to very high results in terms of their overall performance and satisfaction with the use of the telecommunication equipment provided. With the processes and support covering equipment matching, education, training, and delivery, current off-the-shelf solutions can help people with disabilities to effectively communicate with other members of our society and to access the same range of information systems and services enjoyed by able-bodied members of the community.
Nguyen, T., Garrett, R., Downing, A., Walker, L. & Hobbs, D. (2007). Research into Telecommunications Options for People with Physical Disabilities. Assistive Technology, 19(2), 78-93.