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Literature review on cognitive disability research


From: Paul R. Bohman
Date: Jul 20, 2007 2:30PM

I've written a literature review entitled:

"Web Accessibility for Cognitive and Learning Disabilities:
A Review of Research-Based Evidence in the Literature"

It is available as a working paper (subject to revisions) at

I welcome your comments.


Though suppositions and recommendations abound, evidence-based
research focusing on how to make web content accessible to people with
disabilities is scarce. Only seven studies could be found that 1)
directly observed people with cognitive disabilities, and 2) addressed
cognitive disability access from a web content design perspective.
Most of these studies lack the rigor and/or focus to provide any firm
evidence or rationale for guidelines, notwithstanding the many
recommendations promoted by these studies. Certain broad observations
surfaced in multiple studies, such as user difficulties typing text,
understanding context, and navigating within web sites. This
literature review summarizes and critiques the seven relevant studies,
then discusses potential reasons for the dearth of research-based
studies about cognitive disability access to the internet.

Paul R. Bohman
Instructional Web Services
George Mason University School of Law