Travel Behavior of Blind Individuals Before and After Receiving Orientation and Mobility Training (Phase 2: Full-scale Study)

This study devised, tested, and refined a new method for assessing O&M training involving Global Positioning System (GPS) data loggers and accelerometers to collect objective, quantitative, and valid measures of blind individuals’ travel behavior, physical activity pre- and post-O&M training. A total of 12 visually impaired travelers were recruited from scheduled recipients of O&M training at the Bosma Enterprises and Leader Dogs for the Blind. Prior to receiving the training, participants’ travel and physical activities were recorded using a hip-warn GPS travel recorder and accelerometer devices, and subjectively via an audio-recorded travel diary. Altogether, over 4,000 hours of locational and physical activity data were recorded and analyzed over the 322 days evaluated. The Difficulty with Mobility Questionnaire (DMQ-23) was also administered to measure the participant’s perceived level of difficulty in getting around both before and after the training. The researchers found that the perceived difficulty with mobility among study participants, measured by the aggregate DMQ-23 score, was significantly lower after receiving O&M training indicating enhanced confidence in their mobility skills once they received the training. Small but statistically significant increases in trip distances and durations were found after the training, as measured via more objective measures gleaned from GPS and accelerometer data although no significant gains were observed among study participants in terms of more general physical activity.

Language

  • English

Project

  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $165657
  • Contract Numbers:

    DTRT13-G-UTC60 TRC-16-05

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

    University Transportation Centers Program
    Department of Transportation
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Managing Organizations:

    Transportation Research Center for Livable Communities

    Western Michigan University
    Kalamazoo, MI  United States  49009-5316

    Western Michigan University

    1903 W. Michigan Avenue
    Kalamazoo, MI  United States  49008-5241
  • Project Managers:

    Dunn, Denise

  • Performing Organizations:

    Transportation Research Center for Livable Communities

    Western Michigan University
    Kalamazoo, MI  United States  49009-5316

    Western Michigan University

    1903 W. Michigan Avenue
    Kalamazoo, MI  United States  49008-5241
  • Principal Investigators:

    Kim, Dae Shik

    Smith, Christopher

    Connors, Elyse

  • Start Date: 20160901
  • Expected Completion Date: 20181231
  • Actual Completion Date: 20190801
  • USDOT Program: University Transportation Centers
  • Subprogram: Research
  • Source Data: https://wmich.edu/sites/default/files/attachments/u883/2019/Final%20Report%20%28TRC-16-05%29.pdf

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01610408
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Center for Livable Communities
  • Contract Numbers: DTRT13-G-UTC60 TRC-16-05
  • Files: UTC, RiP
  • Created Date: Sep 9 2016 10:17AM