Improving UX for Students with Disabilities in REVEL

Presented at 11:45am in Meadowbrook II on Friday, November 18, 2016.



  • Chris Langston, UX Researcher - Accessibility, Pearson

Session Details

  • Length of Session: 1-hr
  • Format:
  • Expertise Level: Not provided
  • Type of session: General Conference


Pearson has begun testing its next-generation interactive learning platform, REVEL, with low vision, blind, and limited dexterity students to pinpoint usability and accessibility issues. Using evidence-based research, our designers are endeavoring to remove barriers to interactive learning for all students.


Students with disabilities routinely encounter barriers to learning online which are avoidable with good design informed by individual users’ needs. In an effort to bring a research-based approach to the design of interactive learning, Pearson conducted accessibility and usability testing that targeted students with low vision, blindness, and limited dexterity as part of a larger endeavor to integrate the perspectives of students with disabilities into its user experience. Beginning with REVEL, Pearson’s next-generation interactive learning platform (ILP), researchers collected information about the experiences of new users of the software as well as assistive technology. During this presentation, we will present our findings from user testing, as well as the plans for integrating findings into the design process, and iterative changes to the ILP and learning content development pipeline as a result of specific participant feedback.


  1. Low vision and blind students are becoming increasingly important to the software design process at Pearson.
  2. Accessibility testing has led to an improved user experience for all REVEL students.
  3. Screen reader usage patterns enables designers to consider a broader swath of users and avoid pitfalls.

Disability Areas

Cognitive/Learning, Mobility, Vision

Topic Areas

Web/Media/App Access

Speaker Bio(s)

Chris Langston

Chris Langston has a decade of applied and experimental research experience in progressively senior roles as qualitative UX researcher, accessibility specialist, and instructional designer. He has designed and conducted experimental protocols using multiple UX research methods to generate findings from students with disabilities in virtual world environments as a Co-Principle Investigator for the Georgia STEM Accessibility Alliance. He developed and taught a graduate-level course on usability and accessibility for Georgia Tech’s Industrial Design program. At Pearson, Chris leads research related to accessibility for the UX research team within Pearson’s learning design division. He works with designers, product managers, developers, and prototypers to increase conformance with WCAG 2.0 guidelines. Chris also provides expert assistance to expand access to online education products through identification of problems, and application of research methods to reveal accessibility barriers.