Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to measure student perceptions of accessibility at a public university based on campus, new building, and old building accessibility and perceived impacts this may have on the student's quality of education. Design/methodology/approach – A survey was administered to students registered with the office of Resources for Disabled Students at a large university. ANOVA and regression were used to evaluate the survey results. Findings – The campus was found to be Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant, with several areas identified for improvements based on disabled students' reported perceptions. Many of the improvements were between groups with cognitive and mobility impairments. All groups reported a positive relationship between improved accessibility and improved educational experience. Research limitations/implications – The study focused on one institution but the results and existing literature may be useful to other facility management departments. Practical implications – The results of this work may help facility managers and resource for disabled student groups target limited resources to improve the quality of education at public universities. Social implications – The ability to fine‐tune institutional facilities to improve the experiences of disabled persons improves the outcomes and stated goals of the ADA. Originality/value – This work supports many previous studies while expanding the population studied to include looking at building users on a college campus with both physical and mental impairments. This helps facility managers increase their understanding of the accessibility issues that may still remain on college campuses that are technically ADA compliant.
Journal of Facilities Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jul 4, 2013
Keywords: Universities; Facilities management; Disabled people; United States of America; Students; Americans with Disabilities Act; Accessibility; Educational experience; Facility accessibility