Authors Simon Judge, Zoë Clarke, Mark Hawley
JournalJournal of Assistive Technologies, March 2011
Journal of AT
 This study set out to collect data from assistive technology professionals about their provision of speech‐driven environmental control systems. This study is part of a larger study looking at developing a new speech‐driven environmental control system. A focus group for assistive technology professionals was conducted. This focus group was recorded, transcribed and then analysed using a framework approach. The analysis suggested that professionals have a ‘mental model’ of a successful user of a speech‐driven system and that in general they consider such systems either as a ‘last resort’ or to work in parallel with another system as a back‐up. Perceived poor reliability was highlighted as a major influence in the provision of speech‐driven environmental control systems although there were also positive perceptions about the use of speech under controlled circumstances. Comparison with published data from end‐users showed that professionals highlighted the majority of issues identified by end‐users. Assistive technology professionals think that speech has potential as an access method but are cautious about using speech‐driven environmental control systems predominantly due to concerns about reliability. Professionals seem able to empathise well with the challenges faced by end‐users in use of these systems.

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