AuthorRosenblum, Lee Penny, 1964-
AdvisorErin, Jane N.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study examined the best friendships of 40 adolescents with visual impairment. Twenty three best friends of these adolescents also participated in the study. The 63 participants completed a Demographic Form, the Intimate Friendship Scale (Sharabany, 1974), and the Telephone Survey. Ten dyads, who were representative of the study sample, were selected for Personal Interviews. Each of the 40 adolescents with visual impairment and the best friend were similar in gender, ethnicity, grade in school, grades earned in school, and dating experience. Twelve of the best friends also had a disability. On the Intimate Friendship Scale both the adolescents with visual impairment and their best friends rated the dimensions of Frankness/Spontaneity, Giving/Sharing, Trust/Loyalty, and Attachment as being the most salient characteristics in the reported best friendship. Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) tests to examine the effect of gender (male, female), vision status (blind, low vision), and grade group (junior high school, senior high school) yielded significant interaction effects for Frankness/Spontaneity and Trust/Loyalty. The majority of response for where friends spent time together was in the home environment, with the most common activities they reported doing together being hobbies. When talking together both members of the friendship dyad most frequently reported topics around other people and hobbies. Few study participants reported that the visual impairment impacted the activities the friends could do together. The activities that were difficult were ball sports and watching movies. When the 23 best friends reported how their time with another best or close friend was spent, there were few reported differences from how they spent time with the adolescent with visual impairment. Adolescents with visual impairment established reciprocal friendships which had high levels of intimacy and were similar to those of sighted peers. Together the friends engaged in activities typical of nondisabled adolescents. Participants in this study appeared to recognize the limitations of the visual impairment and to adapt interactions appropriately. There were not major differences in the reported friendships of study participants compared to adolescents described in the literature.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Special Education and Rehabilitation