As usual, I went to Mr. Google to write an article and typed “What is inclusive design?” in his knowledgeable and eloquent search bar. Of course, Google suggested that you also search these: “Principles of universal design, universal design in UX and UI, universal design in website design, universal design book, universal design approach, and universal design methods” I said, “Why not?” I started searching and writing.
Have you ever wondered what the manufacturers of a product do when they want to produce a new product or even present the same old product with new packaging?
Well, if they want to rely solely on the taste and experience of a designer, or worse, solely on their own taste, the first and last buyer of the product will probably be themselves.
Yes, well, the story is not as simple as that. We should widen our vision and see a wider range, a little more than the tip of our nose, our taste and needs, and beyond the family and the neighborhood.
No, it’s not enough, it’s still too limited, let’s go higher, the city of the country, and it’s still low, higher.
In its recent updates, Google also pays special attention to the discussion of user experience or UX (user experience) and how easy it is for users with any level of ability to use your website. Basically, the question is, do you want to design for one person or 7 billion people?
Table of Contents
What is inclusive design?
The start of a new decade in the world of design has been accompanied by an increasing focus on inclusive design. This means that UX professionals across the tech industry are increasingly looking to inclusive design to produce products and experiences.
If you’re new to the world of UX design, don’t assume that immersive design is an advanced topic. In fact, immersive design is at the heart of UX design history, and immersive design is one of the most effective and best ways to add depth and meaning to your design work.
In short, inclusive design means intentionally considering and accounting for the needs of users who, because of membership in an oppressed group or statistical minority, are likely to experience exclusion in many aspects of daily life.
Why is inclusive design important?
As a UX expert you have the power to shape everything, you are able to change the nature and direction of a project. This is a tremendous responsibility, and it means that you have the ability to influence design decisions in a way that benefits people who are often overlooked, and this speaks volumes for the importance of inclusive design. Truly, what is more humane and enjoyable than this, may your happiness be blessed.
In fact, all those who participate in the design of a digital product, and at the top of them UX works, as well as software developers, product managers and even talent acquisition specialists, are all responsible for the social impact of the solutions provided, the decisions they make and Or they don’t even get it. This is why understanding the scope and complexity of inclusive design is essential for aspiring technology professionals.
“If we don’t deliberately accept the risk of learning, we inadvertently leave it behind”
People with disabilities, marginalized minorities, and potentially any user (ourselves included) can experience exclusion when interacting with a digital product. Negative, exceptional, and discriminatory user experiences come in many forms, including: denial of access, identity humiliation experiences, unwanted exposure of sensitive information, frustrating experiences.
With this in mind, one way to define an inclusive design approach is to say that it can not only provide solutions that are not easily accessible, but also make people feel They are well received and are safe and valuable.
Examples of inclusive design
As you know in UX (User Experience Design), the 7 main factors that affect the user experience are:
- Being valuable
That we are dealing with its availability or accessibility in inclusive design.
If we want to mention an example from everyday life for comprehensive design, we can mention the design of the entrance doors of the building. In the past, the door handles were designed in a rotating way, which would cause problems if our hands were tied while opening the door, or if someone from the area if the palm had a problem or disability, it would be a challenge to open the door. For this purpose, handles with handles were designed, which can be easily reproduced with the elbow. In hospitals, doors with electronic eyes were designed, which were easily opened when people or objects approached, and gradually this design opened its place in most public places.
Another example that is one of the famous examples of ux is the sauce container, which was designed for the convenience of the user with the sauce lid at the bottom so that the user can use it more easily and have a better experience when using it.
Also, easy-to-open doors were designed for canning doors so that the user has a more pleasant experience in using such products.
Another example is the adaptation of street passages with warning floors for the blind and visually impaired.
Other examples of inclusive design include ramps and inclined surfaces at the entrances of places that have stairs for disabled people.
Also, automatic faucets and automatic lamps are other examples of inclusive design in everyday life.
An example of an inclusive design in the digital world can be mentioned are screen readers that read the text of the page for the visually impaired and the blind and the colors for the color blind.
Another example of inclusive design in the digital world is subtitles for movies that help deaf people enjoy watching movies, although this is not only for deaf people but also for healthy people, for example, it helps students learn a second language. Or when others are sleeping, a person can watch his favorite movie without disturbing him or follow his movie while talking on the phone or in public places. In the following, we will have more examples of inclusive design in the digital world.
“Who is the inclusive designer?
It is very easy to include “everyone” with your design. Design in such a way that it feels like if your design had a language, it would be able to say “welcome” to any person, even in that person’s own language.
2 essential elements for inclusive design
Inclusive design happens when you 1) have the right team behind the design decisions and 2) involve the user in the design process. Let us analyze what is fundamental about these two elements.
Having the right team for inclusive design
Consciously or not, we are all bigots. In the sense that human tendency is to imagine that others have experiences similar to his own. To control and change this tendency, we need time, intention and exposure to the stories and experiences of different people. How does this affect the inclusive design process? This means that we are often unaware of who we are excluding (not considering) from the design process.
The identities presented in a team have a great influence on decisions. As Mike Monteiro says in Ruined by Design, “All the white guys in the room, even with the best intentions, only know what it’s like to make a decision as a white guy.”
Having diverse teams helps us understand and overcome our individual biases. For inclusive design, a product design team consisting of people with different cultural backgrounds, different abilities, and different gender identities is more powerful than a team of people who look, behave, identify, and think in the same ways as before. So find ways to create a highly diverse team that has the ability to see and design solutions for a wide range of user needs.
Engaging users for inclusive design
UX is based on the belief that users should be its main beneficiaries, at the center of everything we do is shape products and solutions for them. You’ve probably heard it before: interview users, discover their needs, test ideas with them, and listen to users once more when you’ve come up with your solutions.
Contacting users becomes even more essential when designing inclusively for user groups we don’t know. Design and accessibility expert Kat Holmes talks about inclusive design with users as an essential part of the process. If we want to ensure that the experience we design is valuable to everyone who might benefit from it, we must design with exceptional user groups in mind.
Inclusive design incorporates achievement standards
Often when talking about inclusive design, the first and sometimes only association people or organizations make is accessibility. Accessibility is the design of products, devices, services or environments that can be used by disabled people. While inclusive design goes beyond accessibility concerns, designing for accessibility is an integral part of inclusive design.
When designing websites, there are some well-known standards and guidelines you can follow to ensure you don’t exclude users based on their ability. The accessibility guidelines on the WCAG website are a great place to start.
Accessibility should be fully factored into your design processes. Companies like Google have integrated accessibility principles seamlessly into their design language.
When a pencil icon indicates editing, and a screen reader reads “edit” aloud to blind or visually impaired people, this can be helpful for accessibility rather than pointing to the shape of the icon and reading “pencil.” So here the icon itself is not important, but what it does is important and should be read.
Inclusive design, beyond accessibility
Inclusive design is accessible and ensures that users are not excluded because of their abilities. This concept extends similar effort and intent to the needs of users who are often excluded for other reasons such as age, background, race, gender identity, etc. Here are some key considerations and best practices to help you design better.
Note that the examples provided are based on experiences and images taken from November 2019 to January 2020, and we do not include them to portray any company or product negatively, but only to provide real-world practical examples of where inclusive design can apply. to be who knows? Perhaps these examples will make other companies think more broadly about how to design inclusively.
Use immersive images
Representing people through icons, illustrator images and photos requires thought and thought. BUX stock trading app assigns a default profile picture to all new users.
It depicts a person with features that are stereotypically considered “masculine”: wider facial features, eyelash less eyes, facial hair, etc., etc., since many of us consider We have been culturally conditioned to conform to male default characteristics such as being healthy, capable, white skinned, etc. The message this photo sends to its users is: Our users are capable, intelligent, financially savvy and male.
Regardless of what their actual users look like, there’s a good chance that some BUX users don’t feel like this image represents them well. If we want to have an inclusive design, there are better options to replace the profile picture.
There are two strategies for generating immersive images: abstraction and diversification. Neither requires a lot of effort, and both can help more users feel included in the experiences and products you design.
Abstraction in inclusive design
Abstraction means moving away from a realistic representation, and in inclusive design it is precisely in favor of allowing users to match the image with their lives and identities. You can do this by using images that are more conceptual but still look like people or even objects or animals.
Abstraction in inclusive design is a great way to ensure no exceptions between users. Lemonade does this when a new user signs up for its services.
Diversification in inclusive design
On the other hand, diversification in inclusive design aims to represent the multitude of differences that users can identify with. This strategy is already widely used in advertising and is suitable for marketing websites as well as product images that do not directly act as a real user or someone they know.
When you’re diversifying into inclusive design, you want to represent the full spectrum of humans in every image you use. Airbnb images are a fantastic example of this. They are very happy to reflect the differences and differences in their society. Creating immersive visuals requires good collaboration between UX and UI designers.
“Anyone of any age, background, nationality, gender, and position with any level of physical and mental ability should be able to have a pleasant experience when using your design, and the accessibility of your design should be completely favorable for them.”
Inclusive design principles
As we have known so far, one of the most important aspects of user interface design (UX) is the accessibility of that product or design in a way that everyone, from young and old, educated and illiterate, athletic or disabled, elite or slow minded, Religious or atheist, Asian or European, African or South American Indians to Japanese samurai, all can communicate with it easily and gain good experience from working with it. The following are among the principles of comprehensive design:
- Equal and equal use of the plan, away from any discrimination for different groups
- Flexibility when used, the design should suit a wide range of needs and abilities of different people.
- Simple and comprehensible product, understanding how to use the product should be simple.
- Easy and comprehensible transfer of information, product or design must provide all users with the required and necessary information according to the environment conditions and the user’s sensory ability.
- Reducing error tolerance or error tolerance, risks and negative results of accidental and unintentional actions should be minimized.
- The need to use minimal physical effort, the product or design should work simply and efficiently with minimal effort and physical effort.
- Appropriate size and space for use and passage, the designer must create appropriate dimensions and space for viewing, approaching and using the product, taking into account the physical conditions, height or movement of the user.