Persons with visual impairment rely on other senses for perceptual access to the world. Does this mean that these other senses become more acute? Does this mean that areas of the brain normally dedicated to visual processing get used for tactile or auditory processing?
Nidhi Aggarwal, a PhD candidate in Psychology (under the supervision of Dr Barry Hughes), is looking for visually impaired participants to contribute to our investigation of such questions.
The research will be conducted in School of Psychology facilities (EEG and Haptic laboratories) on the University of Auckland city campus, 23 Symonds Street. Participants will need to take part in two EEG sessions, scheduled at their convenience, each lasting not more than 3 hours. Some or all of these sessions may involve wearing a net of sensors over the head for EEG recording, and/or tracking finger movements while engaged in systematically varied versions of a tactile task.
Participants should meet the following conditions to be able to participate:
- Either be totally blind or have residual light perception but no form perception.
- No cortical visual impairment.
- No underlying neurological or psychological condition.
- No tactile impairment or severe hearing impairment.
- Must not have diabetic peripheral neuropathy caused by severe diabetes.
- Must have the capacity to consent.
- Must be older than 18 years of age.
A participant’s ability to read braille is not relevant.
Participants will be reimbursed for their efforts with a $200 gift voucher at the end of second session for their participation. We will also compensate for travel expenses to and from the research facility. Currently, studies are being conducted on weekdays from 3-6PM and on weekends from 9am-5PM.
For further details, if you are interested in our scientific pursuit of answers to our questions, please contact Nidhi – firstname.lastname@example.org and she will send more information or answer specific questions. This research has been approved by the University of Auckland Human Participants Ethics Committee, on 18 May 2017, for a period of six years; Ref 019220.
PhD Student, Haptics and Braille Lab
School of Psychology
The University of Auckland