Date of this Version
Kwafoa, P.N.Y. (2019). Visually Impaired Access to Library Services: The Role of Library Infrastructure. Library Philosophy and Practice.
Globally it is estimated that there are 285 million persons living with some sort of vision related difficulties. In Ghana, about 737,743 Ghanaians living with disabilities (Ghana Statistical Service, 2012). The United Nations and other international organizations have always emphasized the importance making education and educational services accessible to all. In recent times, there have been advocates for inclusive education where children with disabilities have been educated together with ‘able bodied’ colleagues. The purpose of this study was to examine library infrastructure for the visually impaired in the public universities in Ghana. The study adopted both qualitative and quantitative research methodologies. The descriptive survey design was adopted for the quantitative aspect of the study whiles case study research design for the qualitative aspect of the study. The study population comprised of visually impaired students, presidents of the Visually Impaired Students Association of Ghana and the Librarians from the three selected public universities. The main instruments for data collection were the questionnaires and a semi-structured interview. The interviews were recorded using an Olympus VN-2100PC digital voice recorder. The study revealed that most of the library facilities in academic libraries were not disability friendly. In view of this visually impaired students were compelled to seek assistance from their sighted colleagues to access the building. There is therefore the need for University authorities must re-examine the existing library infrastructures and provide the needed funding to make theses library disability complaint.