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Tuesday, November 10 • 2:30pm - 3:30pm
Touch and Multi-sensory Experiences: Developing Safe and Inclusive Practices During Covid-19

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Safety, Comfort, and Inclusion: We Choose All
Building off 2019’s MCN session Multi-Sensory Design Towards Inclusion and Access, Sina Bahram and Corey Timpson examine and surface the details related to ensuring rich inclusion and access for onsite and remote audiences, given the world we now find ourselves in. Ensuring safe, comfortable, sustainable, and equitable experience design requires a multifaceted approach across several operational touch points. This session examines intention, design, execution, management, and maintenance across the museum enterprise, focusing on strategic objectives and practical tactics for sustainable solutions.

Accessible Touch Objects
Currently, the majority of museum and historic site experiences are visual and lack tactile alternatives for visitors. In this session we describe our efforts to better understand the challenges and opportunities for sustaining and expanding tactile objects in museums through conducting interviews with 15 museum access specialists from museums ranging in size and location. We discuss the responses from six accessibility experts who identified as blind or low vision to the museums current practices. From our findings, we identify and describe seven different types of touch objects currently being used at museums, which is the most inclusive and descriptive taxonomy to date. We discuss their design processes, trade-offs, usefulness, and value compared to audio and virtual tours. Finally, we share design recommendations for museum practitioners: 1) preserving touch experiences during COVID--19, urgently called for by BLV accessibility experts, 2) considering three additional touch object categories from an interview with a BLV accessibility expert not previously used or mentioned by the museum access specialists, 3) avoiding a one size fits all solution and offer visitors the opportunity to personalize the content and modality of touch objects. Our findings illustrate the diversity and importance of touch interactions in creating accessible educational experiences.

avatar for Cheryl Fogle-Hatch

Cheryl Fogle-Hatch

consultant, independent professional
My work in the museum sector is at the intersection of research and self advocacy. I am uniquely positioned to research and develop applications that improve non-visual access to information and exhibit content. For more information, visit my website and subscribe to my blog.
avatar for Sina Bahram

Sina Bahram

President, Prime Access Consulting
Founder of the inclusive design firm Prime Access Consulting (PAC), Sina Bahram is an accessibility consultant, computer scientist, researcher, speaker, and entrepreneur. In 2012, Sina was recognized as a White House Champion of Change by President Barack Obama for his doctoral research... Read More →
avatar for Lauren Race

Lauren Race

Accessibility Researcher, New York University
Lauren Race is an accessibility researcher and fellow at the NYU Ability Project, an interdisciplinary research space dedicated to the intersection of technology and accessibility. Her research focuses on designing and evaluating accessible and inclusive educational tools for learners... Read More →
avatar for Corey Timpson

Corey Timpson

Principal, Corey Timpson Design Inc.
Corey Timpson is an active collaborator and thought leader in the experience design, digital media, and museological discourses. As VP, Exhibition, Research, and Design, at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) Corey was responsible for the direction and oversight of the design-build... Read More →

Tuesday November 10, 2020 2:30pm - 3:30pm EST
Live stream channel 1