The use of communication technologies by older adults: Exploring the benefits from the user's perspective

Anne Sophie Melenhorst, Wendy A. Rogers, Evan C. Caylor

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

Abstract

The use of advanced communication media may enhance the social networks of older adults. Although many older adults are open to new technology, there are still barriers that keep them from learning and using media such as e-mail and the Internet. Besides lacking skills, the lack of perceived advantages, or benefits, may also explain their reluctance. The goal of the present study was to investigate perceived context-related benefits of communication methods by older adults. Forty-eight independently living older adults in the age range of 65-80 years, 24 e-mail users and 24 non-users, participated in a focus group discussion of different communication scenarios. A systematic analysis of their comments and statements showed the relevance of perceived context-related benefit as a motivational factor for using or not using a medium. An implication of these results may be that training the skills to handle a new technology should also involve providing information about its specific benefits, from the user's perspective.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-225
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 45th Annual Meeting - Minneapolis/St.Paul, MN, United States
Duration: Oct 8 2001Oct 12 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The use of communication technologies by older adults: Exploring the benefits from the user's perspective'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this