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Se mouvoir sans voir. Incidences de l'environnement urbain sur la perception, la représentation mentale et le stress lors du déplacement de la personne aveugle

Abstract : This study investigates the influence of urban environment on some aspects of the mobility of blind people in the city. Using an ecological approach, we explore some mobility parameters in real conditions: environmental perception and feeling, walking speed, cognitive mapping and subjective and objective stress. Our hypothesis suggests that environmental setup and features have a significant effect on these parameters, affecting or facilitating mobility. Twenty-seven blind subjects were requested to perform a 1-kilometer journey consisting of five successive urban scenes in Lyon ("Street 1", "Square", "River-bank", "Avenue", "Street 2"). Subjects walked using a white cane or a guide dog. There were three sessions. During the first walking session, blind pedestrians were accompanied all along. We asked them to comment on their perception of and feeling about the surroundings as they walked. The second walking session was devoted to memorizing the route. Finally, we asked subjects to walk independently for the third and last session, which was integrally recorded on video. We also monitored electrodermal physiological signals with an ambulatory device. Once the journey was over, we asked subjects to make a line-drawing depicting the route (i.e. a map). Results suggest that blind pedestrian's experience of the environment differs according to the urban scene. Environmental conditions affect enjoyment, safety and stress levels. They also affect walking speed and spatial skills. "Streets" and "Avenue" are the most favorable scenes for those mobility parameters, where wide open-spaces like "Square" and "River-bank" are unfriendly. The cognitive map seems to be related to these previous observations: its accuracy varies with environmental conditions. Analysis of the drawings indicates that the most secure scenes (i.e. "Avenue") were under-represented while the most stressful scenes and least secure scenes were over-represented (i.e. "Square"). Electrodermal monitoring yielded the same scene-effect on the physiological signals, as well as the existence of high-activation areas in the journey, apparently corresponding to node-places requiring blind subjects to make important decisions (e.g. having to cross a road, or to choose a direction). These results invite us to consider the environment spectific-perception of the visually impaired persons in the development of accessibility aids, in order to offer a greater autonomy and freedom in mobility in our modern cities.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, May 17, 2011 - 6:17:20 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, April 30, 2020 - 9:52:02 AM
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  • HAL Id : tel-00593859, version 1

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Nicolas Baltenneck. Se mouvoir sans voir. Incidences de l'environnement urbain sur la perception, la représentation mentale et le stress lors du déplacement de la personne aveugle. Psychologie. Université Lumière - Lyon II, 2010. Français. ⟨NNT : 2010LYO20065⟩. ⟨tel-00593859⟩

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