Novel Cartographical Designs for Blind and Partially Impaired Students in Kurdistan
Keywords: Tactile Maps, GIS, Sightless, Education
Abstract. It is understood that all human beings need information, including spatial (geospatial) information. It has to be noted that spatial and geospatial information helps people to enrich the knowledge about certain regions. In general, the knowledge is very significant for strengthening orientation ability, which, in turn, affects the level of intelligence. It is believed that the better a person can recognize geographical information the cleverer s/he is. Being able to have the spatial knowledge helps humans to fulfil their basic needs and find solutions to various problems. Present research uses Geographical Information System (GIS) to create paper maps, which can be transferred onto a touch display where the user can choose different keys and settings (such as colour, measurement, etc.) to represent different forms of data. The study aims to examine the effectiveness of digital interactive cartographical novel solutions in improving text and space memorization among visually impaired Kurdish students. The study’s purpose draws from the knowledge that Kurdistan learners and other demographic groups lack an effective multimodal communication map suited to contemporary society’s demands. The research seeks to fill the gap by presenting a strategy for developing interactive tactile maps for the target group to solve the growing problem of visual impairment in Kurdistan. Technologies associated with tactile maps are reviewed and the application of interactive tactile maps for populations, in addition to those who are visually impaired, is also considered. The obtained results are very useful for blind and low sighted users to communicate information through the assistive technologies on the map due to finding the geographical location easily.