Despite many centuries of research science has yet to fully understand the human brain. We do know how human beings typically process information, but there is a lot of diversity in how our brains operate. In relation to accessibility, as is often the case in real life, cognitive impairment and neurodiversity is not an exact science.
NZ Stats suggest that there is approximately 1-2% of the population diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorders. In NZ there are ~10% of the population diagnosed with some form of Dyslexia. The true extent of Dyslexia and ASD is unclear how many people are on the autistic spectrum as many people remain undiagnosed. Both are spectrums of brain differences that are still not totally understood. Cognitive impairment also comes from brain injuries, intellectual disabilities and diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Temporary and situational cognitive impairment can be brought on by severe fatigue, trauma and information overload.
The impact of a cognitive impairment on technology use ranges from struggling to read text that is laid over busy backgrounds, to being confused enough to stop using a website because you don’t know how to interact. Providing better access to the Internet for people with cognitive access needs typically relates to simplicity, clarity and familiarity.
"Access Advisors is a pan-disability digital accessibility consultancy. Our mission is to help New Zealand become more digitally inclusive. Access Advisors was initiated by Blind Low Vision NZ (BLVNZ) in July 2017. Making products and services more accessible will make it easier for people with access needs to do the things others take for granted. Access Advisors wants to help so that disabled people can enjoy the same opportunities as everyone else."
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