Q1: Who’s behind this site?
We’re Sarah & Scott Pruett, co-founders of The Universal Design Project. Sarah is a registered and licensed occupational therapist and a certified aging in place specialist. Scott has nearly two decades of life experience with disability due to a broken neck and spinal cord injury in 1999.
Q2: What is universal design (UD)?
Universal design is a process of eliminating barriers to make things (in this case, homes) accessible and easy to use for everyone. It’s a natural integration of functional characteristics into the design of homes.
Q3: What exactly is a UD SafeScore?
It’s a measure of universal design, ranging between 0% and 100%.
Q4: What does a UD SafeScore mean?
A UD SafeScore is the percentage of how universally-designed a space is for a wide range of users. The higher the UD SafeScore, the greater the safety of the space assessed. This is due to design features that collectively minimize risk of injury for everyday activities.
Q5: Why measure universal design?
Because there’s a lot of misinformation about universal design. It’s common for people to include a handful of universal design features in a home and incorrectly declare that the home is functional for anyone of any age or level of ability.
There’s a lot of detail that’s often overlooked that can make many everyday tasks hazardous and unsafe for users with decreased health. The UD SafeScore helps identify successful universal design and/or potential for improvement to ultimately increase safety at home.
Q6: How is a UD SafeScore calculated?
Each feature analyzed in our assessments is assigned a point value that’s weighted on a multi-tier scale, based on its importance for the widest range of users and the complexity of modification. The total points are then run through a formula to calculate a UD SafeScore.
Q7: Why do we list every ideal feature in the reviews?
First, to be honest, it was much less time-consuming to code when we needed to primarily focus on the generation of reliable scoring. Second, because every feature matters, and need to be implemented collectively with others.
Q8: Does this cost anything to use?
This site is free to use, with no limits on the number of UD SafeScores calculated and assessments you can take. If you find value in it, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to The Universal Design Project at universaldesign.org.