Building Evidence for Technology and Autism (BETA) is an international project led by the University of Bath and Sorbonne University with collaborators from the University of Edinburgh, the University of Valencia and Northeastern University. The aim of the project is to develop evaluation guidelines to help people make informed decisions when buying or recommending technology for autistic users.
The first phase of the project, drawing on both psychology and human-computer interaction (HCI), led to the creation of a novel scale, which can be applied to assess the degree of user-centredness of a product design. Following that, the team conducted a collaborative study based on the Delphi method, where the goal was to investigate what people in the autism and autistic communities look for when selecting a piece of digital technology suitable for their needs. The novelty of BETA’s approach was that autistic people and their allies were involved as experts on the subject. The study’s findings resulted in a framework that assesses the degree and quality of evidence available for digital products for autistic users.