Facilitating mathematics learning for students with upper extremity disabilities using touch-input system

Kup Sze Choi, Tak Yin Chan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To investigate the feasibility of using tablet device as user interface for students with upper extremity disabilities to input mathematics efficiently into computer. Methods: A touch-input system using tablet device as user interface was proposed to assist these students to write mathematics. User-switchable and context-specific keyboard layouts were designed to streamline the input process. The system could be integrated with conventional computer systems only with minor software setup. A two-week pre-post test study involving five participants was conducted to evaluate the performance of the system and collect user feedback. Results: The mathematics input efficiency of the participants was found to improve during the experiment sessions. In particular, their performance in entering trigonometric expressions by using the touch-input system was significantly better than that by using conventional mathematics editing software with keyboard and mouse. The participants rated the touch-input system positively and were confident that they could operate at ease with more practice. Conclusions: The proposed touch-input system provides a convenient way for the students with hand impairment to write mathematics and has the potential to facilitate their mathematics learning.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)170-180
Number of pages11
JournalDisability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015


  • Access to mathematics
  • Hand impairment
  • Input methods
  • Tablet device
  • Touch
  • User interface

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Rehabilitation
  • Speech and Hearing

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