There are several available assessments that can be utilized to determine the levels of inclusion and accessibility of a wide range of environments on both broad environmental and individual levels. This resource guide provides a brief background on a wide range of such tools, as well as links and contact information to allow consumers to learn more about those that may be of most interest and/or benefit to them, their organizations, and the clients and consumers they serve. This page features environment-level assessment tools, while the next page highlights person-level assessment tools.
*Note: environment-level assessment tools are classified as Objective (O) and Subjective (S). Objective tools are observational assessments, while subjective tools examine environments through the experience of a person with a disability.
(O) The purpose of the Evaluation Guide is to identify areas where residents can direct their energies towards making their communities more livable for older adults and others. Such aspects of livable communities the Guide helps explore include transportation, walkability, safety and security, housing, health services, recreation and cultural activities, and care services. Additional information about and free access to the Guide is available here: http://assets.aarp.org/rgcenter/il/d18311_communities.pdf
(O) The ACE Checklist enables communities to self-assess policies, plans, and funding with respect to built environment features across their communities. Additionally, it helps communities determine the strengths and weaknesses of built environment features as they relate to supporting physically active lifestyles. Some of the areas it targets are planning policies, regulations, funding, bicycle and pedestrian safety, physical activity resources, schools, work sites, and public transportation. Additional information about and free access to the ACE Checklist is available here: http://here.doh.wa.gov/materials/active-community-environments
(O & S) The AIMFREE manual can be used in fitness and aquatic centers to evaluate the built environment, programs, services, staff, information, and policies that comprise these facilities, as well as their operation and management. To learn more and request a free copy of the AIMFREE Manual, contact NCHPAD via phone (800-900-8086), email (firstname.lastname@example.org), or live web chat.
(O) The CDC Built Environment Assessment Tool measures the core features and qualities of the built environment that affect health, especially in relation to walking, biking, and other types of physical activity. It consists of several questions and areas of focus in relation to street segments and intersections. Each segment takes approximately 30 to 45 minutes to complete. Additional information about and free access to the tool is available here: http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dch/built-environment-assessment/
(O) The Audit Tool is used to review both community- and street-scale factors associated with physical activity for older adults. It provides tools and questions to measure individual street segments in close proximity to locations that are most relevant to older adults, such as senior centers. Each street segment takes approximately 20 minutes to complete. Additional information about and free access to the tool is available here: https://depts.washington.edu/hprc/docs/audit_brief_training_pres_2_26.pdf
(O) The CHEC measures the aspects of the physical environment that are important to people with mobility impairments. Specific areas of focus include building entrances, restrooms, amenities, areas of assistance, and overall use and usability of the facility. With experience, an individual can complete the assessment in as little as five minutes. Additional information about and free access to the Checklist is available here: https://enablemob.wustl.edu/DBTAC/WebSurveyStudy/CHEC.html
(O) This checklist, created by Easter Seals Project Action, can be used to evaluate individual public transportation routes and trips, as well as to foster awareness of peopele's different needs and abilities as it relates to all aspects of the transportation process. It provides resources to evaluate routes to and from transit stations and hubs, the hubs and stations themselves, and transportation vehicles. Additional information about and free access to the tool is available here: http://www.projectaction.org/ResourcesPublications/AssessmentToolsandResources.aspx
(O) The CHII can be used to assess the level of health inclusion of a community at large, as well as at a wide range of built environment locations that make up a community, including physical activity, education, work, health care, and food sites. Aside from the community-at-large assessment, it also includes both in-person and organizational assessments that can be done on specific sites with a focus on the built environment, equipment, programs and services, staff, and policies. Based on the size, layout, and components of the site, an assessment can take approximately one to two hours. For additional information about and access to the CHII contact Yochai Eisenberg at email@example.com.
(O) The HEZ Checklist can be used to evaluate the overall accessibility of grocery stores, including accessible entrances and access to goods and services, as well as availability of healthy foods. Additional informaiton about and free access to the tool is available here: http://appliedresearch.cancer.gov/mfe/instruments/braunschweig-health-empowerment-zone-hez-grocery
(S) This instrument drives inquiry about aspects of the home and community environments which influence community participation, including home and community mobility and mobility devices. The survey takes approximately six to 30 minutes to complete. Additional information about and free access to the tool is available here: http://www.bu.edu/enact/files/2011/05/HACE-Survey-and-Manual-v1_7-30-2008.pdf
(O) The Montana Safe Routes to School program has created the SAREC to evaluate the accessibility of routes used in Safe Routes to School programming. Additional information can be found found at the home of the Montana Disability and Health Program at: http://mtdh.ruralinstitute.umt.edu/
(O) This tool, created by the North Carolina Office on Disability and Health, can be used to assess the accessibility of farmers markets, including vendor booths, navigation routes and pathways, parking and transportation accessibility, and restroom accessibility. For additional information about and access to the survey, contact NCHPAD via phone (800-900-8086), email (firstname.lastname@example.org), or live web chat.
(O & S) The Q-PAT can be used to assess the accessibility of pedestrian infrastructure, including public paths and sidewalks, as well as those paths, sidewalks, and other unique outdoor characteristics specific to individual sites within the community. For additional information about and access to the survey, contact NCHPAD via phone (800-900-8086), email (email@example.com), or live web chat.
(O) The Worksite Walkability Audit Tool can be used to examine the suitability of workplace routes for recreational walking and the presence of features needed for persons with mobility impairments. The tool examines walking components that include pedestrian facilities and barriers, crosswalks, maintenance needs, path size, buffers, aesthetics, shade opportunities, and overall universal accessibility. Additional information about and free access to the tool is available here: http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpao/hwi/toolkits/walkability/audit_tool.htm