Please excuse my ignorance on this, but I am really interested in finding out if there is a rule on whether or not one should use Braille dots to make tactile graphics. I personally do not do this but have started a new job recently and others that I work under do. Any advice would be appreciated.
Standards and Guidelines for Tactile Graphics, which was recently approved by BANA (but has not yet been published), acknowledges the use of braille embossers (such as Tiger) for graphics such as pie charts and bar graphs. I, personally, would not recommend it for more complex diagrams such as maps.
There are no "rules" regarding this, and it usually depends upon what an agency or production house has determined in terms of cost effectiveness and staff time required to produce the tactiles. Since you have started a new job, and aren't in a position to make the decision, it is probably best at this point to follow their guidance.
Research has shown that braille readers find that the collage method (textures which are then thermoformed onto plastic sheets), yields the most distinct results. However, with the improvements in computer graphics, and the need the need for access to completed tactiles in a timely manner, many readers have found this to be an acceptable alternative.