Handicap is a general term for restrictions that cause difficulty for certain groups or communities of people. These restrictions hinder the user experience for these groups and causes a disparity between themselves and groups without the handicap. This is in contrast to a disability, which completely prohibits participation in an activity. The concept of a handicap gives rise to the design principle of having not only an accessible experience, but an equitable experience for all users.

There are many examples of handicaps we encounter each day. At MIT for example, people in wheelchairs must take a longer route and use an elevator to enter a building that people without this handicap do not need to do. In a Radcliffe building, there is a wheelchair ramp next to the stairs for people with and without wheelchairs to use. The latter is equitable.

Contributed by Phillip Huang, Kemi Akenzua, and Nik Boström

About the author: Phillip Huang

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