The line between accessory and assistive technology

Glasses = cool, hearing aids = not so much?

How do some tools, like eyeglasses, come to be considered 'normal' while others, like hearing aids, continue to be labeled as 'assistive' technologies that are used by people with disabilities? Michelle Macklem is a radio producer and graduate student in media studies at Concordia University. She examines how labelling certain devices as assistive technologies, shapes our assumptions and treatment of the people who use them

Michelle's graduate thesis project is called Adaptive. Her research was supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada.

In this piece you heard from Aimee Louw, Sara Hendren, and Graham Pullin.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.