The use of personas in understanding healthy aging: senior housing experiences through importance performance analysis (IPA) and simulated physical aging

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Bilkent University
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Accessibility is an essential interior design consideration that increases performance level and allows older people to be independent and physically active in their daily activities. Increase in performance level and a physically active later life enable healthy aging. Modelling of an accessible senior housing is a necessity of the recent design world. Accessibility of these environments should be studied from older peoples’ perspective with a focus on efficient ranking methods and empathy techniques. This thesis aims to present a new method of combining aging simulation with personas through importance-performance analysis (IPA) to support basic daily living activities (BADL). Juxta-positioning of IPA findings with aging simulation findings to use it for persona method makes this thesis unique. The proposed method helps to develop a prioritized persona-based model to create accessible senior housing for healthy aging. This model is constructed based on a semantic coding system; an ontology framework. The current thesis is an attempt to deal with the complex nature of accessible design and their attributes for aging studies, which are often considered as theoretical concepts and standards. The findings of the thesis are significant for future aging studies and mobile computing researches in terms of indicating that physical capabilities of older people are associated with different requirements of accessibility attributes, which require structured knowledge and data management to diagrammatize their association with BADL. Moreover, thesis findings are also beneficial for interior designers to make human-centered interior design decisions effectively.

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Accessibility, Basic activities of daily living, Ontology, Persona, Simulated aging
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