City Research Online

What Is Known About the Impact of Impairments on Information Seeking and Searching?

Berget, G. & MacFarlane, A. ORCID: 0000-0002-8057-0737 (2019). What Is Known About the Impact of Impairments on Information Seeking and Searching?. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 71(5), pp. 596-611. doi: 10.1002/asi.24256


Information seeking and access are essential for users in all walks of life, from addressing personal needs such as finding flights to locating information needed to complete work tasks. Over the past decade or so, the general needs of people with impairments have increasingly been recognized as something to be addressed, an issue embedded both in international treaties and in state legislation. The same tendency can be found in research, where a growing number of user studies including people with impairments have been conducted. The purpose of these studies is typically to uncover potential barriers for access to information, especially in the context of inaccessible search user interfaces. This literature review provides an overview of research on the information seeking and searching of users with impairments. The aim is to provide an overview to both researchers and practitioners who work with any of the user groups identified. Some diagnoses are relatively well represented in the literature (for instance, visual impairment), but there is very little work in other areas (for instance, autism) and in some cases no work at all (for instance, aphasia). Gaps are identified in the research, and suggestions are made regarding areas where further research is needed.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2019 The Authors. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of ASIS&T. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‐NonCommercial‐NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non‐commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z665 Library Science. Information Science
Departments: School of Communication & Creativity > Media, Culture & Creative Industries > Library & Information Science
SWORD Depositor:
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