Accessibility and Usability of Self-service Systems

This special thematic session invites contributions on the accessibility and usability of self-service terminals (SSTs) and related devices. SSTs refer to any computer terminal featuring specialized hardware and software to be used by members of the general public, that provides access to information and applications for communication, commerce, entertainment, or education. SSTs now cover many application domains and have many different names including:

  • financial services via automatic teller machines (ATMs), chip and pin payment terminals and online banking security devices
  • travel services via ticket vending machines (TVMs), ticket validating machines and self-service check-in kiosks at airports
  • retail goods and services via vending machines, self-service petrol pumps and self-service checkouts at supermarkets
  • access to information such as government services kiosks, wayfinding in hospitals or shopping centres or information about cultural heritage (in museums, etc.)

Other terms for SSTs and related devices include: cash point machines, digital kiosks, digital order stations, electronic point of sale (POS) machines, interactive kiosks, internet kiosks, public digital terminals (PDTs) and self-service kiosks.

These systems are proliferating rapidly and providing more and more goods and services, from medical services (e.g. hospital check- in machines) to government services (e.g. postal services).

While the benefits of self-service have been recognized by organizations that deploy self-service terminals, the acceptance by users is more varied. For some people the disadvantages outweigh the advantages, with the attractiveness of the 24/7 service offered by the systems offset by exasperation, frustration, and anxiety-filled experiences.

For other users, particularly older and disabled individuals, the systems are simply not accessible, excluding them from the goods and services on offer and the potential benefits of self-service.

This Special Thematic Session (STS) invites contributions on all aspects of the accessibility and usability of SSTs, including:

  • the value chain for accessibility of SSTs
  • accessibility issues with SSTs, solutions to these issues
  • new paradigms of interaction with SSTs via emerging technologies and devices (e.g. near field communication, QR codes, mobile phones)
  • guidelines for manufacturers or deployers to ensure accessibility of SSTs
  • successful case studies in development or deployment of accessible SSTs

This STS is organized by members of the former EU funded eAccess+ network that is promoting the accessibility of SSTs.

Contributions to the STS have to be submitted using the standard submission procedures of ICCHP.


  • Jenny Darzentas, Department of Product and System Design, University of the Aegean

  • Helen Petrie, Human Computer Interaction Research Group, Department of Computer Science, University of York

Contributions to a STS have to be submitted using the standard submission procedures of ICCHP.
When submitting your contribution please make sure to select the right STS under the category "STS/Session".
Contributions to a STS are evaluated by the Programme Committee of ICCHP and by the chair(s) of the STS.
Please get in contact with the STS chairs for discussing your involvement and pre-evaluation of your contribution.
Submission Deadline for Contributions to STSs: February 1, 2016