Navigating, Discovering and Exploring the Web: Strategies Used by People with Print Disabilities on Interactive Websites

  • Christopher Power
  • Helen Petrie
  • David Swallow
  • Emma Murphy
  • Bláithín Gallagher
  • Carlos A. Velasco
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8117)


The majority of research into web accessibility has focused on identifying and eliminating the problems that people with disabilities encounter when interacting with the Web. In this paper we argue that we need to move away from studying user problems to studying how people with disabilities apply interaction strategies while browsing the Web. In this paper we present a study of 19 print disabled users, including blind, partially sighted and dyslexic people, interacting with a variety of interactive Web 2.0 web applications. The participants undertook tasks using concurrent and retrospective protocols to elicit information about how they interact with web content. The result of this study was a collection of 586 strategic action sequences that were classified into seven different types of strategy. Differences in the application of strategies between the user groups are presented, as well as the most frequent strategies used by each user group. We close the paper by discussing some implications for the design of websites and assistive technologies as well as the future directions for empirical research in accessibility.


Web accessibility user study user strategy print disabled Web users blind Web users partially sighted Web users dyslexic Web users 


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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher Power
    • 1
  • Helen Petrie
    • 1
  • David Swallow
    • 1
  • Emma Murphy
    • 2
  • Bláithín Gallagher
    • 2
  • Carlos A. Velasco
    • 3
  1. 1.Human Computer Interaction Research Group, Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of YorkYorkUnited Kingdom
  2. 2.National Council for the Blind of IrelandDrumcondraIreland
  3. 3.Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology (FIT), Schloss BirlinghovenSankt AugustinGermany

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