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Exploring nature experiences of people with visual impairments

Shaw, B, Coyle, A, Gatersleben, B and Ungar, S (2014) Exploring nature experiences of people with visual impairments Psyecology: Bilingual Journal of Environmental Psychology, 5.

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The positive psychological and physical health effects associated with exposure to natural environments are well recognised. However, previous research in this field has focused almost exclusively upon the visual aspects of the environment, largely ignoring the role of the other senses. This paper reassesses these findings by examining the role senses other than sight play in blind people’s experiences of natural environments. Six people with visual impairments were interviewed regarding their experience of natural environments; interview transcripts were analysed using thematic analysis. The analysis revealed that if the participants felt safe, they reported experiencing restorative effects in the majority of natural environments. Three main themes that contribute to an understanding of the processes involved in psychological restoration emerged: restoration, challenges, sources of experiences. Environmental restoration was reported by participants as being mostly experienced through sound and to a lesser extent through touch and smell.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Surrey research (other units)
Authors :
Shaw, B
Ungar, S
Date : 1 October 2014
Uncontrolled Keywords : visual impairment, environmental restoration, nature perceptions
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 17 May 2017 10:05
Last Modified : 24 Jan 2020 18:26

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