Research at IBM focused on the creation of the accessibilityWorks software to provide on-the-fly transformations to create accessible Web pages, adapted to the specific needs of individual users. This software (a rich package of Web content transformations through an simple user interface, allows individuals to modify Web content to meet their needs. The software also provided automatic filtering of noisy keyboard input (such as that associated with tremors and other motor problems). Through IBM’s Corporate Community Relations, the software was deployed internationally. In 2003, WAT was named Product of the Year by the National Disabilities Council. In 2004, it received the Best New Ability Research Award from the New Freedom Foundation and the Applied Research da Vinci award from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. This software has been contributed to the Global Public Inclusive Infrastructure (GPII)

Recent research on web accessibility has examined web accessibility over a number of years, considering factors that influence accessibility. The work focused on considerations of changes in coding practices as they affect web accessibility.

Related Projects:

Selected Publications:

  • Hanson, V. L., and Richards, J. T. 2013. Progress on web accessibility?, ACM Transactions on the Web, 7, 1, Article 2 (March 2013), 30 pages..
  • Hanson, V. L. 2012. Inclusive technologies, Leadership in Science and Technology: A Reference Handbook. W. Bainbridge (Editor.), Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage., Pp. 231 – 239..
  • Sears, A. and Hanson, V. 2011. Representing users in accessibility research, Proceedings of the 2011 annual conference on Human factors in computing systems, (Vancouver, Canada, May, 2011). CHI’11. ACM, New York, NY, USA, 2235-2238. Reprinted in ACM Transactions on Accessible Computing, Vol. 4, No. 2, Article 6, March 2012.
  • Trewin, S., Laff, M., Hanson, V., and Cavender, A. 2009. Exploring Visual and Motor Accessibility in Navigating a Virtual World, ACM Transactions on Accessible Computing, 2, 2 (Jun. 2009), 1-35.
  • Richards, J. T & Hanson, V. L. 2004. Web accessibility: A broader view, Proceedings of the Thirteenth International ACM World Wide Web Conference, WWW2004, Pp. 72 – 79.
  • Nicolau, H., Montague, K., Guerreiro, T., Guerreiro, J., and Hanson, V. L. 2014. B#: Chord-based correction for multitouch Braille input, Proceedings of the 2014 annual conference on Human factors in computing systems (CHI ’14). ACM, New York, NY, 1705-1708. Best Paper
  • Hanson, V. L., Cavender, A., and Trewin, S. 2015. Writing about Accessibility, ACM Interactions, (XXII.6 Nov-Dec 2015), 62-64.


Co-PI, Ethical Inclusion of People with Disabilities through Undergraduate Computing Education, NSF 1540396, 12/15 - 11/19, $449,987. Rochester Institute of Technology.

Co-Investigator and University of Dundee Lead, RCUK Hub: Inclusion in the Digital Economy, RCUK EP/G066019/1 10/09 – 09/ 14, £12,632,447. [Partnership with Newcastle University; £1,985,998 to the University of Dundee]

Royal Society, Wolfson Merit Award, WM080040, 2009 – 2013


Co-Investigator, Adaptive Technologies for Enhancing the Accessibility of Digital TV, 06/09 – 12/12. RCUK EPSRC and BBC. £85,000.

Principal Investigator, Design in the Digital World Network, EPSRC EP/H006664/1, 4/09 – 10/12. £106,194.

Co-Investigator, An Organic Approach to Virtual Participatory Design (SEEDS), EPSRC EP/H006834/1, 04/09 – 03/11. £365,055

Co-Investigator, Requirements Gathering for an Inclusive Digital Economy, EPSRC EP/F066848/1, 04/08 – 10/08. £61,815

Co-Investigator, An Inclusive Digital Economy Supporting Older and Disabled People, EPSRC EP/G002118/1, 04/08 – 06/09, £210,713

Principal Investigator, Universal Usability Doctoral Research Consortium, NSF, 11/03 – 10/04. $20,617

Research Projects Publications