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Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology

Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):

, 2, , 85-95

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Purpose.To examine experiences among individuals in the USA with traumatic brain injury (TBI) regarding their access to and use of the Internet, problems encountered, and desire for improved Internet access and skills.

Method.An in-depth survey was administered as a semi-structured interview to 80 individuals at least 3 months post moderate to severe TBI.

Results.Two-thirds of respondents reported having a computer at home, but only half had access to the Internet. Fewer than half were Internet users, as compared to 60% users in the USA population at the time of the survey. However, Internet activities engaged in by users in this sample were comparable to those of the overall population. There was a strong interest in using the Internet among non-users. Most respondents expressed a strong desire for coaching or other training to enhance or develop Internet skills. Reported reasons for Internet non-use in this sample were lack of access and knowledge, versus lack of interest as in the general population.

Conclusions.The high interest in using and learning more about the Internet supports the development of interventions to improve Internet skills for people with TBI.


Vaccaro, M., Hart, T., Whyte, J., Buchhofer, R.