Cognitive Disabilities – Designing for a broad spectrum: AccessU

Posted on Friday, 18 May 2018 by Kurt Mattes

At the 2018 John Slatin AccessU conference organized by Knowbility, I spoke about the wide variety of circumstances driving the cognitive abilities any of us have at any given moment. The difference between intelligence and cognitive ability, as well as the broad range and individual nature of cognitive abilities were explored. Attendees also had a brief look at the type of value offered by each of the new WCAG 2.1 Success Criteria containing benefits for people with cognitive impairments.

Variable is the constant in cognitive ability and it applies to a person as well as between different people. That variability creates a conundrum, the need for mutually exclusive or diametrically opposed solutions.

The talk acknowledges technology enhancements groups like the Global Public Inclusive Infrastructure and W3C are working on to resolve some of the more complex issues, and then offers techniques to consider now. Numerous ways for providing additional options or information to overcome the conundrum are offered. Each aims to open a broader spectrum of cognitive abilities necessary for successful perception, comprehension, recall, and interaction.

Slides from Cognitive Disabilities: Designing for a broad spectrum (PPT)

About Kurt Mattes

Kurt was the concept developer for Chase Bank when tasked with establishing an accessibility policy, team, and training curriculum. He became an international accessibility employee networking group board member, expanded his team to 24 experts, and provided the technical guidance necessary for developing a JP Morgan Chase enterprise-wide ADA Controls program. He subsequently left JP Morgan to consult other fortune 500 organizations such as State Farm, US Bank, and Ally Bank. Kurt has also contributed to the W3C Cognitive and Learning Disabilities Task Force for accessibility.


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