Title: Enhancing human rights: computer and information technologies with access for all

Authors: Maria Barile; Catherine S. Fichten; Jennison V. Asuncion

Addresses: Adaptech Research Network, 3040 Sherbrooke St. West, Montreal, Quebec, H3Z 1A4, Canada ' Adaptech Research Network and Psychology Department, Dawson College, 3040 Sherbrooke St. West, Montreal, Quebec, H3Z 1A4, Canada; Psychiatry Department, McGill University, 845, Sherbrooke Ouest, Montreal, QC H3G 1Y6, Canada; Jewish General Hospital, ICFP, 4333 Cote St. Catherine Road, Montreal, QC H3A 2T5, Canada ' Adaptech Research Network, 3040 Sherbrooke St. West, Montreal, Quebec, H3Z 1A4, Canada

Abstract: Inclusion of people with disabilities in the new knowledge-based society can be facilitated by universal design of information and communication technologies (ICTs). This will be a first step in providing the tools to reduce poverty and enhance human rights. Here, we present highlights of the Adaptech Research Network's ten-year corpus of empirical work on education and ICTs for postsecondary learners with disabilities. Consistent with various versions of the social model of disability, recurring findings from our research link the need for availability, affordability and accessibility of both the technological and learning environments and show a clear link to the notions advocated by various versions of the social model of disability. When these three pertinent elements are provided, individuals with disabilities achieve academic success - and obtain jobs - at the same rate as their non-disabled peers.

Keywords: universal design; information and communication technology; ICT; information technology; postsecondary students; people with disabilities; human rights; poverty reduction; disability; social model; availability; affordability; accessibility; learning environments.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSHC.2012.053163

International Journal of Social and Humanistic Computing, 2012 Vol.1 No.4, pp.396 - 407

Available online: 07 Apr 2013 *

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