Universal Design

Interactive Wayfinding for the Visually Impaired

Touch-Responsive Wayfinding for the Visually Impaired

The Last Mile

For the blind and visually impaired, wayfinding in public places is getting easier thanks to new touch-responsive talking maps and models.

Imagine arriving at an unfamiliar school building for the first time. You need to navigate a complex maze of rooms, corridors, stairwells, and spaces to find the classroom or office that is your final destination—all in a concentrated period of time.

Now imagine you are blind.

Kathy Fredrickson

Kathy Fredrickson is director of exhibition research and publishing at the Peabody Essex Museum. She leads the exhibitions and research team in support of exhibitions and future installations and oversees the museum’s print and interactive publishing initiatives. Fredrickson’s primary responsibilities are to foster innovative thinking, provide project management, and develop appropriate publishing initiatives.

 

Kathy Fredrickson, Peabody Essex Museum
Salem, MA

Kelley Deal

Kelley Deal is a Co-chair for the Charlotte Chapter.

Environmental Graphic Designer. Will travel. Gladly.

I'm an environmental graphic designer in Charlotte by way of the Midwest, with a background in both interior architecture and graphic design.

Kelley Bozarth, Little
Charlotte, NC

Design Anthropology as Bridge between Respectful Knowing and Making

Elizabeth (Dori) Tunstall
Swinburne University of Technology

ABSTRACT
“Design translates values into tangible experiences. What are your values?” This is a question Dori Tunstall asks students who take her courses in the Design Anthropology Program. Marking the boundaries between respectful knowing and making, design anthropology lives across and within design’s desire to serve as a positive force in the universe by drawing attention across evolving human values, the making of environments, objects, communications, and interactions that express those values, and the experiences that give interpretation to those values and their meanings. But design must learn to tread respectfully in order to avoid becoming another colonizing practice. In this presentation, Dori Tunstall explores the teaching of design anthropology as a hybrid praxis of 1) critical anthropological and design theory, 2) anthropological and participatory design research methods, and 3) design studio and social systems making. She outlines eight principles of design anthropology as a decolonized practice that seeks to be respectful of different ways of knowing and making. The showcasing of projects completed by students in her Transcultural Aesthetics and Contemporary Design course marks the limitations and possibilities of the discipline as a bridge between respectful knowing and making.

Building a Culture of Design Research

Meredith Davis
Graphic and Industrial Design College of Design, NC State University

ABSTRACT
Research education in design is a timely topic given the current trajectory of design as a profession. Arising from trades, the field has developed over the last half century, now showing most of the behaviors that are common to well-established professions: documented history; code of ethics; interest in methodology; growing body of literature; and developing criticism. The work yet to be done, however, is to build a mature culture of design research, as all professions have individuals whose primary work is to generate new knowledge that becomes the basis of practice. And this is an effort that can be accomplished only through a partnership between professionals and educators.

KNOWHERE: Finding Ways to Teach Wayfinding

Samantha Perkins
Miami University (Ohio)

ABSTRACT
Breadcrumbs. Wayfinding, an amazing tool, deals with providing navigational “breadcrumbs” to travelers, helping them find their way between locations. Speaking the language of space, information, shape, and form, wayfinding addresses the communication of information within the realms of graphic design, architecture and interior design. But sometimes problems in clear communication arise, especially when the behavioral aspects of human navigation are overlooked. Luckily, we can address these issues early... Assuming we rethink the current wayfinding education model, and teach beyond the book.

By considering issues of navigation behavior, we can establish a wayfinding education model that seeks to help explain the how and the why behind navigation, regardless of the ultimate where. But how do we teach behavior and context in the static environment of a standard classroom? KNOWHERE, an immersive education model designed to teach wayfinding in a more hands-on manner, uses graphic design to establish educational events that communicate ideas of design elements in an immersive context and environment. Through the use of exhibit design and mobile studio equipment, the KNOWHERE model pulls students out of their chairs and immerses them in the world of wayfinding in ways that encourage exploration and creative analysis.

Gabriel Gallina

Gabriel Gallina is an Architect and Urbanist, holds an MBA in Marketing from Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV), Brazil, and is currently a Master's Degree candidate at Universidade do Vale do Rio dos Sinos (UNISINOS) Design Program, Brazil. His research interests include retail design strategies, wayfinding, creative cities and user experience.

Gabriel Gallina, SCENO
None
Rio De Janario, Brazil

Jim Harding

Jim Harding leads Gresham, Smith and Partners, an award-winning Environmental Graphic Design Group based in Nashville, Tennesee. Since 1986, his career at GS&P's includes a diverse range of signage and wayfinding design experience is unique in the breadth of industries and project types it covers, including corporate and urban design, healthcare, land planning and aviation clients.

Headshot of Designer Jim Harding, Gresham, Smith and Partners
Gresham Smith
Nashville, Tennessee

Design Innovations through Collaborative Research Methods

University of Cincinnati

ABSTRACT
Technology is presenting new opportunities for designers and educators to collaborate in developing tools for reading instruction. This paper shares a collaborative research study that leveraged visual communication design, reading literacy, and educational psychology research to help teach early reading skills through a multi-sensory experiential learning tool. This study demonstrates how collaboration and design problem-solving can contribute to addressing communication design problems and developing experiential learning methods.

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