Introduction

Hie Quebec User Evaluation of Satisfaction with assistive Technology (QUEST) is a new outcome measurement instrument designed to evaluate a person's satisfaction with his or her assistive technology device. It can be used with adolescents, adults and elderly persons who as a result of a physical or sensory impairment have acquired an assistive technology device. The assistive devices targeted include seating and mobility aids environmental control units, hearing and visual aids as well as aids to assist in the performance of daily living activities. The concept of satisfaction as defined in QUEST refers to a person's positive or negative evaluation of those distinct dimensions of the assistive device that are influenced by one's expectations, perceptions, attitudes and personal values. It is important to note that QLTEST does not assess the user's performance with the aid. Rather, its focus is on how satisfied the person is with specific features of the assistive technology device as well as certain characteristics of the services related to the technology.

Hie QLTEST 2.0 is the result of the doctoral research conducted by Louise Demers and her research directors. Professors Rlioda Weiss-Lambrou and Bemadette Ska. It is a product of more than four years of research and development. Although there are some general satisfaction questionnaires and checklists that have been developed (Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America, 1998), QUEST is the first and only standardized satisfaction assessment tool that was designed specifically for assistive technology devices. In developing the instrument, data from several sources contributed to item generation including Batavia and Hammer's evaluation criteria (1990). Scherer's Matching a Person with Technology (MPT) model (1996) served as the theoretical foundation for the instrument.

The QUEST 2.0 was created for assistive technology practitioners and researchers (i.e. occupational and physical therapists, speech pathologists, psychologists, and rehabilitation engineers). Designers, manufacturers and vendors of assistive technology devices can also use it. This new version of the assessment tool is in a paper and pencil format that can be either self-administered or completed with the help of the evaluator. As a clinical tool, the QUEST 2.0 provides practitioners with a means of collecting satisfaction data that can be used to document the real-life benefits of assistive technology and to justify the need for these devices. As a research tool, it can be used to compare satisfaction data with other outcome measures such as clinical results, quality of life, functional status, cost factors and comfort. It can also serve to compare satisfaction results obtained with different user groups, in different service settings and in different countries. Finally, because the QUEST 2.0 is easier and shorter to complete than its original version, it can be used in research studies (e.g., postal surveys) that require rapid acquisition of satisfaction data.

The QUEST manual is organised as follows. Chapter 1 presents an overview of the development and psychometric testing of the original QUEST and the steps undertaken to construct the second version. Chapter 2 provides a complete description of the QUEST version 2.0 assessment tool and explains the QUEST form. Guidelines on how to administer, score and interpret the results are also provided. Chapter 3 highlights some of the psychometric properties of the QUEST 2.0 and invites the reader to consult the authors' recent publications on these findings. A list of publications on QUEST and the assessment materials are also included in this publication.

It is important to note how the terms "user" and "evaluator" are used throughout this manual. For reasons of clarity and consistency, the word "user" refers to the person who is being assessed; it refers to the consumer, the client, the patient or the respondent. The word "evaluator" refers to the professional who is either administering the QUEST or who is scoring and interpreting the results; it refers to the practitioner, the researcher, as well as the designer, manufacturer or vendor of assistive technology.

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