On September 22nd, the RTC: Rural hosted its third State of the Science (SOS) Rural Colloquium on Environment and Participation for people with disabilities. The International Classification of Function, Disability and Health focuses on participation as a dynamic interaction between an individual and the environment. Environments that foster participation through accessibility features are less disabling to the individual with mobility or other impairments and facilitate health. In this SOS event, presenters focused on both the interior and exterior environments and the independent measures used to evaluate them.
Tom Seekins, Professor of Psychology and Director of RTC: Rural, presented on the use of Google Earth street view to identify usability features in the built environment. Professor of Geography, Diep Dao, presented on the transportation geography of internal environments and the evaluation of user accessibility using 3-D models computer models. By using technology for observations and models, researchers can assess features that promote usability and access with the goal of greater inclusion of people with disabilities in community participation.
Please join us for future State of the Science Rural Colloquiums on Environment and Participation. The goal of these presentations is to foster collaboration across disciplines to identify new strategies and methods of evaluating environment and participation with a focus on disability. Past presentations have included researchers from wildlife biology, recreation management, disability researchers and geographers.