Do ICT university students receive mandatory training modules about inclusive design solutions?
“Inclusive design solutions”” means the design of products, environments, programmes and services to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design. Art.2 CRPD). “ICT students” include various roles, such as software and applications developers, web and graphic designers, analysts and database and network professionals.
Relates to Convention Article:
- No.9, Accessibility
- No.4, General obligations
It is one of a State Party’s general obligations to “undertake or promote research and development of universally designed goods, services, equipment and facilities, as defined in article 2 of the present Convention, which should require the minimum possible adaptation and the least cost to meet the specific needs of a person with disabilities, to promote their availability and use, and to promote universal design in the development of standards and guidelines” (Article 4, Paragraph 4 (f) of the CRPD). In addition, Article 9 prescribes that States Parties have to “[p]romote the design, development, production and distribution of accessible information and communications technologies and systems at an early stage, so that these technologies and systems become accessible at minimum cost”.
In the interests of clarity and focus, it should be accepted that the question is intentionally restricted to university students, as informal or non-formal education greatly differ from country to country.
Comparing the full picture it seems clear that accessibility has mostly not entered in universities curricula.
While the results on primary education are good, the case is the contrary for the presence in university of training modules about inclusive design solutions probably related to the fact that in many countries laws on the accessibility of the built environment exists but are not taken as a priority and not sufficiently put under enforcement. Anyway, the situation is still better for architects and engineers than for ICT professionals, where only two countries replied with a clear “Yes”.