Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Connecting Technology and Older Adults Technology and Older Adults: Evolution, Myths, and Revolution Roger W. Morrell, Ph.D. Director of Research, GeroTech.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "Connecting Technology and Older Adults Technology and Older Adults: Evolution, Myths, and Revolution Roger W. Morrell, Ph.D. Director of Research, GeroTech."— Presentation transcript:

1 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Technology and Older Adults: Evolution, Myths, and Revolution Roger W. Morrell, Ph.D. Director of Research, GeroTech Corporation Adjunct Faculty, School of Nursing, Johns Hopkins University Director, Aging & Technology Institute Older Users & The Web

2 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Outline  Myths  Evolution in Research  Revolution in Use of Electronic Technology by Older Adults  Recent Projects Resulting from the Research  Briefly Back to Myths

3 Connecting Technology and Older Adults The Myths

4 Connecting Technology and Older Adults The Myths  In the beginning, electronic products were designed by young people to be used by young people.  Video games  Computers introduced into schools  Few advertising efforts were made to interest older adults.  Training opportunities were geared toward younger people.

5 Connecting Technology and Older Adults The Myths  1) Older adults are less interested in learning how to use these technologies.  2) Older adults simply cannot learn how to use these technologies.  3) Older adults are more anxious and have poorer attitudes toward computer use relative to younger adults which ultimately leads to nonuse.

6 Connecting Technology and Older Adults The Evolution of Research For a more detailed discussion of this research: Older Adults and Information Technology: A Compendium of Scientific Research and Web Accessibility Guidelines Morrell, Dailey, Feldman, Mayhorn, Echt, & Podany, 2003 Available through the National Institute on Aging Checklist is also available

7 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  Initial research focused on older adults’ attitudes toward the use of electronic technology and their level of anxiety toward the use of electronic technology (primarily computers).  The research began in  Most researchers found no age differences in attitudes.

8 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  Most older adults have positive attitudes toward the use of computers and other types of electronic technology.  Anxiety level did not seem to affect performance.  Older adults did not seem to be more anxious than younger adults in learning how to use electronic technology.

9 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  We also found that attitudes could be modified under certain circumstances.  Longer training periods led to more positive attitudes and better performance in the training sessions led to more positive attitudes.  But the effects were small.

10 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  At the same time, research was focusing on how older adults learn to use electronic technology (computers) relative to younger adults.  Research began in  Cognitive aging researchers and researchers in Human Factors focused on how they learned and how best to train them. (about 15 studies)

11 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  We looked at their use of word processing and spreadsheet software, Line Editors, Bulletin Boards, interactive computer programs, and how to acquire basic computer skills.  Our research question was: How do they perform relative to younger adults?

12 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  We found that older adults made more mistakes and took more time to learn how to use these products than younger adults.

13 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  We also searched to find the optimal training method for teaching computer skills to older adults.  We looked at advanced organizers, modeling, manual, and interactive techniques.  We did not find an optimal training method. However, self-pacing and peer interaction seemed to help.

14 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  We then went on to look to see if they could learn and retain skills over time.  They can! We showed that adults ranging in age from could be taught skills and return weeks later and be able to perform these skills.

15 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  More recent research has shown that older adults can acquire memory training techniques and software skills, and also glean information on career development, pre-retirement, and/or health issues using CD-ROMS. (Mahoney, Tarlow, & Jones, 2002; Stoltz-Loike, Morrell, & Loike, 2004; Plude & Schwartz, 1996; Echt & Kressig, 2001).

16 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  As the Internet became more and more popular, research focused on older adults’ ability to use the Internet.  These studies began In  Through systematic studies and usability studies.

17 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  Through systematic studies we again found that older adults take more time and make more mistakes when conducting searches.  The more steps included in a search = more mistakes (the complexity hypothesis which says the more difficult the task the greater the age differences in performance).

18 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Evolution  Through usability studies we found that navigation on most web sites was a problem.  The greater the depth of a web site (the number of levels) the more trouble older adults had in navigation. Scrolling was also a problem.  We also found that normal age-related differences in vision, memory, comprehension, and motor skills affected performance.

19 Connecting Technology and Older Adults The Revolution in Use of Electronic Technologies

20 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Revolution How are Older Adults Using Electronic Technology?  In general, it is still true that older adults use electronic devices less than younger adults. However, the fastest growing segment of Internet users are people over the age of 60 relative to new users in other age groups.

21 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Revolution  In 1984, about 2.5% of individuals over 55 owned computers. In 1998, about 25% owned them. And they are purchasing them with rapid speed so this percentage is increasing. (Department of Commerce, 1999, 2002)  In a recent survey over 70% of elderly computers owners reported that they have Internet access and 80% said they have accessed it in the past month (SeniorNet, 1998; Adler, 2002)

22 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Revolution  It is predicted that Internet use by the elderly will increase as much as 358% from 3.7 million users in 2001 to 17.3 million in  At present, it is estimated that about 22% of older adults are surfing the Web. (Scanlon, 2001; Pew Internet & Life Project, 2004)

23 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Revolution  This is not surprising because we knew almost 2 decades ago that computers could be introduced successfully into a variety of environments with older adults. (Morrell, in press; Morrell, Dailey, Feldman, Mayhorn, Echt, & Podany, 2003)  So, what are they doing on the Internet?

24 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Revolution  They are spending more time online than other age groups (approximately 8.3 hours per week).  The are spending more money online than other age groups.  The most common items purchased are clothing, music and compact discs, computer hardware, books, and computer software (in that order)! (e-Marketer, 2000, Greenfield Online, 2000, Willis, 2003)

25 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Revolution  A survey that my colleagues and I conducted revealed that middle-aged adults (ages ), young-old adults (ages ), and old-old adults (ages 75+) most wanted to learn how to do the same things on the Internet, but they ranked their choices differently. (Morrell, Mayhorn, & Bennett, 2000)

26 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Use of Information Technology Preferences in Web Use by Middle Aged, Young-Old, and Old-Old Adults (Morrell, Mayhorn, & Bennett, 2000)

27 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Revolution  The reasons they were not accessing the Internet were: 1) No access to a computer 2) No training opportunities or information  But just as important: 3) They did not know what they could do on the Internet or how to find what they wanted to know suggesting there is a motivational issue here.

28 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects as a Result of the Research

29 Connecting Technology and Older Adults The NIH Senior Health Project

30 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The NIH Senior Health Project was jointly sponsored by the National Institute on Aging and the National Library of Medicine.  Other institutes at the National Institutes of Health are will post components on the web site in the future on other health issues concerning older adults.

31 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects The project had two goals in its inception.  1. To identify the basic and applied research in cognition and aging, perception and aging, and human factors and aging that could be used to form the basis of a set of guidelines to guide the construction of a web site that met the needs of older adults. (Guidelines can also be applied to other electronic products)  2. Apply the guidelines in the construction of an actual web site that would be accessible for older adults.

32 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The NIH Senior Health Project employed scientific findings from basic and applied systematic research in cognition and aging and human factors and aging to guide the design of the web site for use by older adults.  The web site was designed to serve as a model that meets elderly accessibility requirements and also 508 accessibility standards, those recently mandated for persons with disabilities

33 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Age-related changes in vision have implications on how a web site is designed for older adults. In particular they affect:  the typeface, type size, and type weight used;  the amount of contrast between the type and backgrounds;  the spacing of the type and justification; and  and the use of color. (Hartley, 1999; Morrell, et al., 2003)

34 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Age-related changes in certain aspects of cognition (verbal and spatial working memory, text comprehension ability, and perceptual speed) may affect how well an individual can perform web navigation tasks. (Craik & Salthouse, 2000; Salthouse, 1991)  These changes are usually not dramatic but their presence might interfere in the performance of computer tasks. (Morrell & Echt, 1996, 1997; Morrell, 1997, 2002; Morrell et al. 2003)

35 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Design Implications  Writing the Text Style Phrasing Complexity Organization of the material  Incorporating Other Media Illustrations and Photographs Animation, Video, and Audio Text Alternatives (Park, 1992; Holt, 2000; Morrell, et al., 2003)

36 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects There are other aspects of web site construction that should be taken into consideration to help older adults navigate a web site.  Consistent Layouts  Navigation that is simple and straightforward  Style and Size of Icons and Buttons  Scrolling or the lack of scrolling  Site Maps  Allow for pages to be read again (Holt & Morrell, 2002; Morrell, 2002; Morrell, Mayhorn, & Bennett, 2002; Morrell, et al., 2003)

37 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Unique Aspects and Features of the Web Site

38 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects

39 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  This is the “Talking Web”.

40 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Type size can be immediately enlarged.

41 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Page contrast can be changed.

42 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Example of normal page.

43 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Example of page using the Contrast Feature.

44 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The navigation system is readily apparent and consistent.

45 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Large buttons are easy to click on.

46 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The typeface and type size used are easy to read.

47 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The videos are a popular feature.

48 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The videos are easy to use.

49 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The videos feature audio and open captioning.

50 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Animations are used to illustrate textual concepts.

51 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects BusinessThinking Products Designed for Use by Mature Workers SeniorThinking, LLC Marian Stoltz-Loike, Ph.D. CEO and President

52 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The BusinessThinking products are e- learning courses on the use of software such as PowerPoint, Excel, Word, and also about how to use the Internet for people over the age of 50.  Other courses include Career Development, Job Finding, and Pre-Retirement Planning.  Additional courses are in the development stage on other issues of importance to older adults.

53 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  All products are designed in CD-ROM format and can engineered to be accessed through corporate/government intranets as well as on the SeniorThinking.com web site.  The products are designed to be used to alleviate the high costs of personnel training in traditional formats.  The design of all of the products is based on the guidelines for elder-accessibility developed by the National Institute on Aging.

54 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  An explanation is presented immediately on how to use BusinessThinking products.

55 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  All products begin with an Index.

56 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  All courses are carefully organized.

57 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Illustrations and animations are used.

58 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  All procedures are presented in a step-by-step manner.

59 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Design is consistent throughout all products.

60 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects The Research Component of BusinessThinking  Initial development was funded by the National Institute on Aging through an SBIR grant.  Usability tests were conducted on all products with mature adults (ages 50 – 69), individuals representative of older people still in the workforce.  Knowledge assessments were also conducted to determine if mature adults can learn from the products.

61 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects What we have found:  Application of the NIA guidelines have resulted in almost errorless performance of usability tasks.  In some instances, certain subcategories of information were hard to fine (this information was not crucial to navigation).

62 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  Improvement in knowledge acquisition improved 23% on information about career development when the CD-ROM was used alone.  We tested taking the CD-ROM home and using it for one week, adding an instructor-led Web-based component (via Webex), and adding a peer2peer component.  All methods resulted in 50%+ improvement in performance of tasks after only about 3-4 hours of instruction.

63 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  These results suggest that mature adults can learn from e-learning products whether they use the products by themselves alone, use them with two or more people in a small group, or use them via the Web in a classroom situtation.

64 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects Web Accessibility Tool Box Annie Becker Professor of Computer Information Systems School of Management Florida Institute of Technology

65 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  This series of products can be used to evaluate features of web sites for elder-accessibility.  Research was funded by the National Science Foundation  Dottie is similar to Bobbie which is used to determine how well web sites meet the 508 standards.

66 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The Dottie Tool evaluates a Web Page for compliance with the NIA guidelines by generating a report on usability barriers.

67 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The Readme Tool evaluates Web page content.  The Readme Tool generates statistics on reading grade level, syllables, word count, sentence counts, and average sentence length for a specified Web page.

68 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The Readme Tool generates a printout.

69 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The Aging Simulator tool demonstrates how darkening and yellowing of an image is seen by a 60 or 75 year old.

70 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  The Graphic Analyzer uses neural net technology to transform an image (gif file) onto one that is seen by a person with color deficiency.  The Usability Enforcer transforms a Web Page by enforcing usability rules associated with a user profile and computing environment.  The primary focus is on making a Web page usable for older adults.

71 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Projects  In other work by Annie Becker, a usability study was conducted on 125 government, commercial, and nonprofit Web sites designed to provide health information.  The NIA guidelines and other factors were used as gauges to test the elder-accessibility of the sites.  Approximately 93% of the sites did not meet the requirements for elder accessibility. (Becker, in press)

72 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Back to the Myths

73 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Back to the Myths  1) Older adults are interested in learning how to use these technologies.  2) Older adults can learn how to use these technologies and retain these skills.  3) Older adults are not more anxious and do not have poorer attitudes toward computer use relative to younger adults.

74 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Back to the myths  Electronic products can and should be designed for the older user.

75 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Reality Challenges  “If you build it, will they come?”  Probably not.  Lack of current use of government sites and lack of revisits to other sites.  This is a motivational issue.  This is a marketing issue.

76 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Reality Challenges  There are substantial numbers of current Baby Boomers who do not use computers and have no intention of using the Web.  Use in diverse populations. Use by people with low computer, verbal, and health literacy.  Pilot and demonstration projects that disappear due to lack of funding. Research land is riddled with the ghosts of what could have been…

77 Connecting Technology and Older Adults Thank you. GeroTech Corporation 2120 Greenwatch Way, Suite 200 Reston, VA


Download ppt "Connecting Technology and Older Adults Technology and Older Adults: Evolution, Myths, and Revolution Roger W. Morrell, Ph.D. Director of Research, GeroTech."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google