Universal and Accessible Design for Products, Services, and Processes: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Universal and Accessible Design for Products, Services, and Processes

1st Edition

By Robert F. Erlandson

CRC Press

288 pages | 61 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9780849374937
pub: 2007-08-03
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New laws, global competition, technological advances, and evolving societal values toward disability all demand the integration of universal and accessible design principles into the general practice of the design community. This growing international movement forces competitors to expand their traditional concepts of design and adopt these principles as a core component of design and essential to success in today’s global market.

Universal and Accessible Design for Products, Services, and Processes introduces design principles informed by recent national and international legislation and global market pressures. Divided into four sections, the book begins with a broad-brush overview of the societal and global issues that continue to nurture the growth of accessible and universal design. Using clear, approachable examples, it defines and differentiates accessible versus universal design and explores their relationship in the broader context of design. Section two concerns legal issues and explains the societal concepts of disability that mold legislative mandates for accessible design. It covers changing accessibility laws and resources such as the Access Board that exist to assist with compliance. Section three presents a collection of design strategies, examples, and applications spanning as many disciplines as possible to illustrate each of the three main levels of universal design: human function principles, including ergonomics, perception, and cognition; process principles, covering flexibility, error-management, and variability; and the transcending principle of equitable design. The final section examines the evolution of universal design and future directions.

Supplying definitions, theory, and applications, Universal and Accessible Design for Products, Services, and Processes allows professional designers, educators, and students to implement these principles and understand how their application fits a broader societal and competitive design environment.


"I strongly recommend this text as a supplement to your normal design text, no matter what your engineering field is. The coverage is excellent and should be of value to most undergraduate design classes."

– In IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Magazine, May/ June 2008

Table of Contents


Introduction and Definitions

The Time Has Come

Design: Universal Design/Accessible Design/Adaptable Design

Disability, Laws, and Accessible Design

Disability and Design

Accessible Design

Universal Design Principles, Strategies, and Examples

Hierarchical Structure of Universal Design Principles and Implications for the Design Process

Ergonomically Sound


Cognitively Sound


Error-Managed (Proofed)

Efficient (Muda Elimination)

Stable and Predictable

Equitable: Transcending, Integrating

Universal and Accessible Design in the Workplace

The World Wide Web: Accessibility and Universal Design

Ethical Considerations and Conclusions

Ethics and Universal Design

Universal and Accessible Design from a Social and Political Perspective


Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Quality Control
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Industrial Engineering
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Industrial Health & Safety