Jacobson, R.D. and Kitchin, R.M. (1995) Assessing the configurational knowledge of people with visual impairments or blindness, Swansea Geographer, 32, 14-24.
One of the fundamental human needs is the need to know the world around us. and to be able to freely navigate within this environment. Visually impaired and blind individuals experience a different world from those that are sighted, and yet their spatial understanding of this world remains relatively unknown. Assessing their comprehension of the everyday geographic environment can be undertaken using a variety of data collection and analysis techniques. from the simple (e.g.sketch mapping) to the complex (e.g. multidimensional scaling). This paper examines the various methods designed to collect and analyse the configurational knowledge of sighted individuals and assesses their applicability to collecting the configurational knowledge of people with visual impairments or blindness. A small study, utilizing quantitative and qualitative techniques, is used to investigate the utility of various tests in assessing the contigurational knowledge of one blind person and two visually impaired people from Aberystwyth, Wales, UK.