Designing the Research Study
Accessibility of materials and the research itself must be addressed before the recruitment of participants. Consider the following:
- Are research materials provided in large, sans serif font (Arial, 16pt or larger is recommended)?
- Are potential participants able to manipulate materials for accessibility? For example, digital files that can read aloud by JAWS, text that can be manipulated on screen for readability.
- Determine with your institution’s ethics board if a digital signature or verbal consent can be provided in place of writing by individuals when consenting to participate.
- Be aware that some individuals may identify as blind, visually impaired, or partially sighted, while others may prefer the term ‘visually independent’.
- Ensure the language used in recruitment materials is inclusive for all potential participants. Provide a clear definition of visual impairment for the purpose of your study (for example: citing specific diagnoses, or clear definitions such as: “legal blindness, or best-corrected visual acuity of 20/200 or worse and/or a visual field of less than 20 degrees in the better eye”), rather than assuming potential participants will identify with a term you have selected.
- As with any study, clearly communicate your intent, your research question, and what the results will be used for.