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How to Make the User Experience Positive and Effective for the Person with a Disability Using Assistive Technology

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To fully model the perceived experience of a user, practitioners should include a set of repeated objective and subjective measures in their evaluation protocols to enable satisfaction and benefit analysis as a “subjective sum of the interactive experience.” It is also well known that if the UX of a product is assessed at the end of the design process, product changes are much more expensive than if the same evaluation were conducted throughout the development process. In this study, we aim to present how these concepts of UX and UCD inform the process of selecting and assigning assistive technologies (ATs) for people with disabilities (PWD) according to the Matching Person and Technology (MPT) model and assessments. To make technology the solution to the PWD’s needs, the MPT was developed as an international measure evidence-based tool to assess the best match between person and technology, where the user remains the main actor in all the selection, adaptation, and assignment process (user-driven model). The MPT model and tools assume that the characteristics of the person, environment, and technology should be considered as interacting when selecting the most appropriate AT for a particular person’s use. It has demonstrated good qualitative and quantitative psychometric properties for measuring UX, realization of benefit and satisfaction and, therefore, it is a useful resource to help prevent the needs and preferences of the users from being met and can reduce early technology abandonment and the consequent waste of money and energy.
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Chapter
An assistive technology assessment process model that is consistent with the ICF, in that it emphasizes the individual’s well-being and the best match between the user and the AT solution, is needed, and is thus proposed in this chapter. This requires a user-driven process through which the selection of one or more technological aids for an AT solution is facilitated by the comprehensive utilization of clinical measures, functional analysis, and psycho-socio-environmental evaluations. This chapter is divided into three main sections. The first focuses on which individual functioning measures should be used, with a focus on the principle stating that disability is a multidimensional construct and does not have an underlying principle of measurement valid for every assessment. Additionally, the only guiding principle for a proper measurement is the clarity of the purpose of the measurement. The second section focuses on how to measure individual functioning, by both pointing out some guiding principles for choosing and applying a set of measures and by suggesting some tools that fit these principles. The third section suggests some measurement tools for an ATA process used in a center for technical aid.