"i am not an engineer": Understanding how clinicians design & alter assistive technology

Rahaf Alharbi, Ada Ng, Rawan Alharbi, Josiah Hester

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

In the emerging maker movement, clinicians have long played an advisory role in the development of customized assistive technology (AT). Recently, there has been a growing interest in including clinicians as builders of Do-It-Yourself (DIY) AT. To identify the needs of clinicians-as-makers, we investigated the challenges that clinicians faced as they volunteered in an AT building project where they were the primary designers and builders of assistive mobility devices for children. Through observation and co-building of modified ride-on toy cars with clinicians, we found that the rapid pace of development and transient relationship between user and builder did not allow for a complete assessment of the child's mobility. Furthermore, clinicians struggled to actualize concepts borne out of their clinical intent due to a lack of engineering skill. This study highlights the need for tools that support clinicians-as-makers in the AT maker process and a new conceptualization of the role of DIY-AT maker programs within the AT provider ecosystem.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCHI EA 2020 - Extended Abstracts of the 2020 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
ISBN (Electronic)9781450368193
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 25 2020
Event2020 ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI EA 2020 - Honolulu, United States
Duration: Apr 25 2020Apr 30 2020

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings

Conference

Conference2020 ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI EA 2020
CountryUnited States
CityHonolulu
Period4/25/204/30/20

Keywords

  • Assistive technology
  • Children
  • Making
  • Physical therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Software

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