Photo of Chantal Trudel

Chantal Trudel

School of Industrial Design

Phone:613-520-2600 x 5626
Office:3476 Mackenzie Bldg

Research Interests

My research focuses on supporting a continuum of health and wellness, whether it be in a clinical setting or in daily living through the application of principles and methods from human factors and design. This has included a spectrum of work focused on supporting neonatal care, to fostering independence and quality of life for older adults. My students and I have seen the value in taking a cross-contextual approach in designing for health and wellness. Our projects may focus on the user experience of a certain demographic or group across a variety of contexts which has included residential/home environments, transportation and health and wellness settings. This approach allows us to develop a better understanding of user experience across different environments and systems – systems which, in reality, are naturally navigated throughout the day to achieve our goals, objectives and perform a variety of activities. But the other benefit of this cross-contextual approach, is that it may spark insights or shifts that can be brought to possibly stagnate or insular systems or areas of expertise.


My research interests naturally extend from my prior professional experience in accessible design, where I was very fortunate to work on a variety of projects that not only had accessibility and inclusion at the forefront of the work, but was also surrounded by supportive, interdisciplinary team members championing this much-needed approach to ‘real world’ design.

In working closely with persons with disabilities, designers can develop a greater sensitivity to barriers persons with disabilities may be experiencing in daily living. This involves creatively engaging persons with disabilities and relevant stakeholders to rethink and move beyond such barriers in order to foster a more sustainable approach to health and wellness. A participatory and interdisciplinary process is fundamental to developing a more comprehensive understanding of people’s characteristics and abilities, but also the limitations people may be experiencing – limitations that may have resulted from lack of consultation, or a failure to develop or draw on an adequate or appropriate knowledge base. What’s encouraging and highly motivating about working in the field of accessible design, is that our on-going work in the community is enriching our understanding of how we can move toward a framework that supports responsible design and innovation.

Selected Publications

Trudel, C. (2020). Useful, Usable and Used? Challenges and Opportunities for Virtual Reality Surgical Trainers. Recent Advances in Technologies of Inclusive Well-Being: Virtual patients, gamification and simulation. Springer’s Book Series: Intelligent Systems Reference Library.

Daigle, K., Clark, D., Trudel, C. & Kelsey, S. (2020). Aircraft Accommodation for People Living with Obesity: A call for a review of existing seating, safety and emergency regulations. 11th International Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics (AHFE 2020) and the Affiliated Conferences. July 16-20th, San Diego, California, USA.

Hoskin, E., Singh, A., Oddy, N., Schneider, A., Girouard, A., Trudel, C., Trepanier, G. & Stewart, J. (2020). Assessing the Experience of People with Autism at the Canada Science and Technology Museum. CHI 2020 Late-Breaking Works poster presentation. ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. April 25th-30th Honolulu, Hawaii, USA.

Ahmadi, M., Chan, A.D.C., Davies, C. Frankel, L., Girouard, A., Graham, T.C.N, Labiche, Y., Lemaire, E., Stewart, J. & Trudel, C. (2018). Research and Education in Accessibility, Design, and Innovation: Integrating Post-Secondary Training in Accessibility. Canadian Engineering Education Association Conference. Building Foundations for Student Success. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, June 3-6, 2018.

Dulude (Campbell), C., Trudel, C., King W. J., Macaulay, K., Gillert, J., Czunyi, L., & Hafezi, S. (2018). Optimizing Electronic Medical Record User Experience: A Human Factors Approach to Hardware Assessment and Design for Inpatient and Emergency Units. Human Factors and Ergonomics in Health Care: Shaping the Future 2018. Boston, Massachusetts, USA, March 26–28, 2018.

Trudel, C., Cobb, S., Momtahan, K., Brintnell, A., & Mitchell, A. (2017). Human Factors Considerations in Designing for Infection Prevention and Control in Neonatal Care – Findings from a Pre-Design Inquiry. Ergonomics 61(1):169-184. DOI: 10.1080/00140139.2017.1330967

Trudel, C., Cobb, S., Momtahan, K., Brintnell, J., & Mitchell, A. (2016). Disconnects in design and infection prevention and control – how the design of products and the environment in neonatal intensive care may be undermining infection prevention practice. Human Factors and Ergonomics in Health Care: Shaping the Future 2016. San Diego, California, USA, April 13–16, 2016. Published in International Symposium on Human Factors and Ergonomics in Health Care: Improving the Outcomes, 5(1), July 22, 2016.