Ergonomic Design of Interfaces for People with Dementia

  • Elisabeth IbenthalEmail author
  • Claus Backhaus
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 824)


Because age is one of the greatest risk factors for dementia, the number of people with dementia will increase rapidly prospective. Due to their cognitive impairments and thereof resulting limited interactions with technical aids, everyday products are not sufficiently adapted to the needs of people with dementia. People with dementia need technical aids, which are adapted to their specific symptomatology. The aim of this work was to evaluate the user interface of an entertainment system and the examination of the system in real context of use. For investigating the user interface, a rocker switch, a rotary switch and a push button were trialed in a usability test with 14 people with dementia regarding perception and operation. The quality of interaction was assessed by using ordinally scaled degrees of assistances, which were given by the test coordinator during tests. For evaluating systems in real context of use, six people with dementia received a prototype for five weeks. Each operation was saved in log files and was combined with questionnaires for caregivers. As a result, differences in perception couldn’t be proven, whereas people with dementia used the rocker switch significantly better than the rotary switch. Results of investigating the systems in real context of use show a dependency on dementia severities and individuals, which complicate a general statement about the effect and use of systems. An enlargement of the sample with a classification into different user groups should be carried out prospective for examining systems in real context of use.


People with dementia Usability-test Interface design Entertainment system 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Human Factors and Medical Device DesignUniversity of Applied SciencesSteinfurtGermany

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