Directional Sense

How to Find Your Way Around

Non-Fiction - Self Help
357 Pages
Reviewed on 12/26/2012
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Author Biography

Janet R. Carpman, PhD and Myron A. Grant, MLA are wayfinding consultants who have worked on hundreds of analysis, planning, and design projects in large, complex, public facilities. Believing that designed environments and their wayfinding systems should respond to the needs and preferences of the people who use them, Carpman and Grant have involved thousands of users in their projects over the past 30+ years. They are authors of "Directional Sense: How to Find Your Way Around," and "Design that Cares: Planning Health Facilities for Patients and Visitors" and partners in Carpman Grant Associates, Wayfinding Consultants, Ann Arbor, MI.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Alice DiNizo for Readers' Favorite

Authors Janet Carpman and Myron Grant have written "Directional Sense: How to Find Your Way Around" as a guide for the traveler on how to read signs, consult maps and ask for directions. As the Foreword, by Richard Saul Wurman, states, "For directionally challenged people, this book shows not only the light at the end of the tunnel, but how to get to and through the tunnel itself." In easy-to-follow chapters, the authors reassure the reader that everyone gets lost and explain how to decipher numbers and words, how to read maps and follow signs, how to recognize landmarks and how to ask directions and re-ask them if need be.

Excellent and numerous black and white photographs illustrate many points the authors are making on getting where one needs to go. The ending sections of "Notes and Sources" and the index are excellent, informational and well-organized. "Directional Sense: How to Find Your Way Around" could easily be a text for classroom use. It is well-written, well-organized and highly useful for all readers. Sooner or later, someone will visit a city or an area and wish they had this book in their backpack. The authors deal with subjects such as too many landmarks in a place, signs that are totally confusing, signs that are hard to decipher and are obstructed, and how to read a map correctly. They tell how to navigate a parking lot to find one's car and to remember that in other countries, sometimes a native giving directions is not to be taken seriously. "Directional Sense" should be a classroom must for schools everywhere.