Senior citizens embrace change and make a new technology work for them

Wendy Nasmith, Mary Parkinson, Glen Walker
2008 Electronic library  
As the New Zealand population ages, libraries will find themselves providing services to an increasing number of senior citizens who are starting to experience age related conditions such as vision impairment. Some of these people will also appreciate the housebound service that many public libraries offer. The libraries will be looking to new technology to help them provide a better and more efficient service and give clients greater control over how they access information and recreational
more » ... ding. There is a perception that "Seniors" are reluctant to change but a recent Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind pilot project to test an internet-connected digital talking book player with borrowers, most of whom were in their 70's and 80's, has shown the opposite. This positive attitude to change by seniors was also reinforced in a survey of library users and non-users conducted by the Foundation. If the reward is greater independence and a better service, and they are given appropriate support they will embrace new technology and make it work for them. Wendy Nasmith was one of the instructors who installed the new players, taught the seniors how to use them and then supported them through the trial. Wendy will present the results of the trial and the survey but will also give a personal account of her experience of teaching vision impaired seniors to manage a new talking book player and a new distribution system.
doi:10.1108/02640470810910693 fatcat:qbm5seergnhlnjkj35iieexs2m