Older Adultsí Preferences for and Acceptance of Robot Assistance for Everyday Living Tasks

Many older adults value their independence and prefer to age in place. Robots can be designed to assist older people with performing everyday living tasks and maintaining their independence at home. Yet, there is a scarcity of knowledge regarding older adultsí attitudes toward robots and their preferences for robot assistance. Twenty-one older adults (M = 80.25 years old, SD = 7.19) completed questionnaires and participated in structured group interviews investigating their openness to and preferences for assistance from a mobile manipulator robot. Although the older adults were generally open to robot assistance for performing home-based tasks, they were selective in their views. Older adults preferred robot assistance over human assistance for many instrumental (e.g., housekeeping, laundry, medication reminders) and enhanced activities of daily living (e.g., new learning, hobbies). However, older adults were less open to robot assistance for some activities of daily living (e.g., shaving, hair care). Results from this study provide insight into older adultsí attitudes toward robot assistance with home-based everyday living tasks.