A woman in a wheelchair works at a desk.

Accessible Workplace

Accessible Workplace

The Accessible Workplace Lab develops new workplace technologies and strategies that maximize the independence and participation of people with disabilities in the workplace. The lab provides educational products and resources to support those trying to improve workplace accessibility. Particular interests include the use of accessible information and communications technology (ICT) in the workplace, the development of an evidence base of what accommodations work in which situations, and the use of inclusive/universal design practices to support all employees, including older workers.

Current Projects

A woman in a wheelchair presses a button to open an accessible door.

Universal Design Practices to Enhance Work Outcomes: A Disability and Rehabilitation Research Project (DRRP)

Principal Investigators: Jon Sanford and Karen Milchus

Current workplace accommodation practices focus on making job tasks accessible, but pay less attention to how the employee is able to interact with coworkers. The goal of this project is to determine the effect that universal design (UD) has on workplace participation for employees with disabilities. To accomplish this goal, CATEA (Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access) is developing separate measures for workplace participation and for the presence of UD elements. This later tool is unique in that it covers both the physical environment (e.g., is there an automatic door) and social environments (e.g., do coworkers prop open the door). Data will be collected from employers and employees, and the investigators will identify UD accommodation practices that are associated with positive work outcomes.