Visibility Vol 11 Issue 3 & 4


Do Blind and Visually Impaired Adults use the Mouth to Perceive Properties of Objects?


Compared to sighted peers, blind and visually impaired (BVI) children demonstrate excessive and protracted mouthing of objects, which is thought to be non-functional and detrimental to hand skills development. However, BVI adults’ anecdotal accounts of using mouthing to perceive objects suggests that although this behavior is socially discouraged after infancy, it continues to provide BVI adults with valuable information about objects. Since young children may not be able to express why they mouth objects, this study will analyze interviews with BVI adults to identify object properties that are functionally and preferentially discriminated by the mouth.

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