Carrying out research about adult social care services for visually impaired people presents challenges that are not necessarily found in other fields.
The purpose of this review is to draw attention to these challenges and to guide the researcher through them. It does so by drawing on the academic and grey literature.
The review covers the ideological context of research in this field; definitions of visual impairment and their appropriate and inappropriate uses in research; misleading claims and reliable evidence about the size and characteristics of the visually impaired people and the reasons that these are important issues for research in the field.
Challenges also cover the main topic areas of research and the methodological approaches, both quantitative and qualitative, that researchers have taken to deal with them. Issues common to both types of method cover sampling; the instruments used to collect data; the means of obtaining informed consent from visually impaired people, and organisations that can potentially assist researchers in this field.