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Types of Disabilities

There are many reasons why someone may experience varying degrees of visual, auditory, cognitive, neurological, physical, or speech issues that would interfere with their ability to use the web or IT products. Some may have disabilities from birth, an illness, disease, or accident. Some may develop impairments with age. Some may be temporarily impaired; others may have permanent or worsening conditions.

Rather than try to list every cause of every impairment, we design for a few major categories as broadly as possible.

What about aging?

“Being old” isn’t a disability, but aging brings with it a number of major and minor issues that tend to happen together. The WAI provides resources for addressing design and development for older people.

Aging and growing old

Additional Resources

Web Accessibility – Types of Disability by Coolfields Consulting outlines various types of disabilities (as listed above) as well as what features on the web can make life difficult for individuals with those types of disabilities.