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Title:Provision of Library and Information Services to Visually Impaired and Physically Challenged Persons: A study of the Services in Select Indian Universities
Author(s):Rayini, Junaid
Subject(s):Visually impaired
Physically challenged
Library services
Assistive technologies
India
Abstract:India has approximately 150 million persons with disabilities who have the inalienable fundamental right to life as enshrined in the Constitution including the right to seek knowledge and education. Libraries play a critical role in creating an enabling environment for citizens to gain knowledge, information and education. This is particularly true in the case of persons with disabilities who experience barriers in accessing services that many of us have long taken for granted, including health, education, employment, and transport as well as information. Access to information is major problem for the disabled in India. It was the concern of this study to investigate the availability, quality and quantity of appropriate services offered by the Libraries to Visually Impaired and Physically Challenged persons in Indian Universities. Using a survey method the study aimed to gather information regarding the layout of library buildings and availability of information sources, services and assistive technologies to the Visually Impaired and Physically Challenged persons in Central University Libraries in North India. The provision of training and orientation programmes for the users as well as staff has been analyzed. The study also sought to find out the challenges faced by visually impaired and physically challenged persons in accessing the services along with the barriers that hinders the libraries in provision of services to these users. Findings of the study revealed that only 50% of the libraries have information sources in alternative formats such as Braille, Daisy books and talking books etc. and those too were found to be outdated and not as per the needs of visually impaired users. Transcription service i.e. conversion of printed documents in other accessible formats is available in 60% libraries along with the facilities of audio books recording. Inadequate funds emerged as major barrier in providing services to visually impaired and physically challenged users along with lack of assistive technologies, trained staff and reading materials in accessible format. User responses revealed that physically challenged users are more satisfied with the sources and services than visually impaired users. Students were asked about the challenges they face while accessing the library and it is found that lack of reading materials and assistive technologies are major barriers faced by visually impaired and physically challenged users.
Issue Date:2020-10-13
Series/Report:Academic Libraries
Specific Populations
Information Needs
Genre:Conference Poster
Type:Text
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/108843
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-10-09


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