Stroke and universal design

Charlotte Magnusson, Margarita Anastassova, Sabrina Paneels, Kirsten Rassmus-Gröhn, Bitte Rydeman, Gary Randall, Leire Ortiz Fernandez, Stephand Bouilland, Julien Pager, Per Olof Hedvall

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPaper in conference proceedingpeer-review


Universal Design (UD) is usually stated to be “for all ages and abilities”. Given that stroke is a major source of disability, it is important that UD recommendations take stroke-specific problems into account. Within the framework of EU project STARR, we have investigated user requirements of stroke survivors. In this project we have used a mix of interviews, focus groups, design workshops and technology tests to come up with a set of design recommendations, which we present as a first step towards universal design recommendations which are inclusive for stroke survivors. Our general recommendations are: make it fun, do not make people fail, empower and encourage. The technology needs to be highly adaptable to different sets of abilities. Safety, but also aesthetics and simplicity is important, but it is pointed out that designs should not be “childish” – this can be felt to be degrading. It is important to be able to see and follow your progress and win small victories often. Consider social applications and activities –being able to connect to others in the same situation can enable discussions and provide peer support. More stroke consequence specific recommendations are to design to allow one-sided use (hemiplegia), avoid sensory and activity overload (fatigue), complement speech with images (aphasia), limit demand on memory, support learning and avoid errors (memory problems), and include multiple modalities in your design (reduced vision or hearing).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransforming our World Through Design, Diversity and Education - Proceedings of Universal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress 2018
EditorsGerald Craddock, Cormac Doran, Larry McNutt, Donal Rice
PublisherIOS Press
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781614999225
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Event2018 Universal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress, UDHEIT 2018 - Dublin, Ireland
Duration: 2018 Oct 302018 Nov 2

Publication series

NameStudies in Health Technology and Informatics
ISSN (Print)0926-9630
ISSN (Electronic)1879-8365


Conference2018 Universal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress, UDHEIT 2018
Abbreviated titleUdheit 2018

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Design
  • Interaction Technologies


  • Design
  • Recommendations
  • Stroke
  • Universal design


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