University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Engineering Design Centre > A Task Analysis Tool for Estimating Exclusion from Work Tasks during Inclusive Design

A Task Analysis Tool for Estimating Exclusion from Work Tasks during Inclusive Design

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Julie Jupp.

PhD Student at the Engineering Design Centre

Abstract: Inclusive design is a user-centred design approach that focuses on designing for the widest population possible within the design process. For this purpose designers require tools that enable the comparison of the task demands of the proposed design with the capability of the population. This paper presents a new framework for functionally linking a comprehensive capability and disability prevalence data set for the UK population, with the process of task design.

The alarming escalation in the rate of the ageing population with their associated changes in sensory, physical and cognitive capability has resulted in people becoming excluded from performing some tasks in a safe and effective way. The task analysis tool presented will allow the level of exclusion for work tasks to be defined very early and throughout the design process.

The task analysis tool presented will allow ageing user capabilities to be defined and applied to the design process in a practical and accurate way thus allowing the level of exclusion to be defined very early and throughout the design process. Some results from a pilot study of 136 subjects will be presented in terms of the application of the exclusion model to “real world” work tasks. The results of the analysis clearly indicate there are certain aspects of the particular task requirements which have a high exclusion potential. When these task elements are mapped against capability prevalence data, the exclusion tool can estimate the numbers of people who are excluded from a particular profile of task demands. Defining the level of exclusion, particularly very early in the design process, will allow designers to make informed decisions regarding the level of exclusion from specific features of their product.

The benefits for greater inclusivity in the final design are not just confined to the individual who can perform the task requirements in a safe and effective way. There are significant benefits at the organizational level as companies struggle to fill their skills sets within their operational functions. The proposed inclusive design audit tool has the potential to be an integral component of organizations risk management systems to ensure people are not excluded from parts of their current or proposed job task functions.

This talk is part of the Engineering Design Centre series.

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