24 June 2019
Source: City, University of London
The study, funded by Fight for Sight and run by the University of Manchester in collaboration with City, University of London, aims to discover whether mobile electronic devices such as smartphones and tablets improve quality of life for people with a visual impairment.
Although this technology has great potential to benefit people with visual impairment, there is currently little evidence of the impact of using the devices, or the effectiveness of the training programmes on offer. Ongoing support has been found to be important when introducing users to other forms of new technology, in the form of volunteers to provide assistance and advice, therefore the study will match up some of the participants with a volunteer buddy in addition to providing training. The research team will complete a randomised controlled trial to compare the effect of a training only model, to a scheme in which the participant completes the training and has additional ongoing support from the “buddy”. Well-being, quality of life and use of the device will be measured before and after the training, and 6 months later.
We are seeking volunteers aged 18 to 95 with a visual impairment, who are thinking of buying a mobile electronic device (such as smartphone or tablet), who may benefit from training to use the device and additional support from a volunteer, and are able to travel into Manchester or London on a regular basis for the duration of the study.
If you are interested and would like to find out more, the research team would love to hear from you. Contact details are