A study on the comprehension of graphic representations of architectural project designs by elderly users
The elderly population is increasing worldwide, leading to a growing concern about the quality of life of this segment of the population, including housing issues. Aging brings several perceptual, cognitive and motor limitations that make it difficult to understand spatial information. These limitations have an impact on the elderly’s understanding of graphic representations of dwelling projects, as effectiveness in the communication between architects and elderly users may be jeopardized. With this in mind, a study on elderly users’ understanding of project representations was conducted in Brazil. The study investigated the understanding of three project representations: 2D technical drawings; electronic model with 3D static perspectives of the space; and digital simulation of virtual tour through a house project. 15 people took part in the study. In general, the results showed poor comprehension of all representations, the virtual tour representation yielding the most positive outcomes. The possible influence of age and gender on the performance of the participants is discussed. It is concluded that ageing and realism in depiction affect elderly users’ assimilation of information presented in architectural projects, corroborating the literature.
Keywords: elderly, built environments, architectural projects, communication, graphic representation
Published online: 23 September 2019
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