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Designing Technology for Neurodivergent Self-determination: Challenges and Opportunities

    Technology for neurodivergent people has been developed in the past to align them with expectations by neurotypical people. Participants in the widest sense are encouraged to discuss the major challenges and opportunities in designing technology for neurodivergent persons in the context of education, work and for leisure. A key focus is to address knowledge acquisition, skill development, and joy from the perspective of a neurodivergent classmate, colleague, or teammates. At higher education institutions, accommodations are not common everywhere and mostly unknown to lecturers. In the workplace, management tools should respond to the requirements of an employee with autism or ADHD. Technology for leisure time is not designed for neurodivergent pleasure. Uptake of the findings are discussed with participants.

    3D visualisierte Abbildung einer industriemaschine, deren Bedienelemente mit Erklärungen überlagert sind. 3D visualised image of an industrial machine whose operating elements are overlaid with explanations.

    Transferring Real Operating Concepts Into Virtual Reality for Neurodiverse Learners

      The application of modern technologies to improve educational environments is required due to a lack of workers, a decline in engineering student enrollment, and insufficient support for students who are neurodivergent. To support high education and career training for neurodiverse learners, this paper investigates the incorporation of real device operating concepts into virtual reality. Various VR implementations of common operating components were compared for immersion and usability. Functional virtual devices with operating components were integrated into a VR education platform and evaluated with both neurotypical and people with ASD. The study results demonstrate high usability for neurotypical users while emphasizing the need for improved graphical quality, user comfort, and the integration of features and techniques that enhance user movements and provide adaptable interfaces for neurodivergent users.

      Workshop on Designing Accessible Extended Reality: An Opportunity for People with Disabilities and Disorders

        Extended Reality (XR) technologies offer a wide range of innovative use cases and interaction concepts. On the one hand, they provide several possibilities to reduce barriers for people with specific physical or mental needs, e.g., through simulations, gamification, or training scenarios. Individuals with anxiety disorders, dementia, or autism spectrum disorder, for example, may also benefit. On the other hand, it is challenging to design accessible XR technologies for heterogeneous user groups. Therefore, the area of accessible XR as well as adaptation based on users’ needs and contexts, is of high interest and has barely been researched yet. Participants of the workshop are encouraged to discuss both – the major challenges and opportunities in designing XR-based assistive technology for different target groups and scenarios, as well as the accessibility of XR technologies.

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