Assessment Tools for Visually Impaired

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Assessment tools for
Visually Impaired

• Using real objects rather than representative objects or pictures • Addressing impact of child's experiences with the environment on performance
Familiar vs. unfamiliar objects: If you use familiar objects, the child has had time to explore and develop concepts; unfamiliar objects may take the child more time to explore them. If a child only knows his objects, this may indicate lack of experience and under generalization of concepts.

Familiar vs. unfamiliar people: A child who is blind may need time to warm up to an unfamiliar person. It is important to read the child and allow him to maintain contact with his parents and to allow him to initiate interactions. Familiar vs. unfamiliar location: A child who is visually impaired will need time to explore and familiarize himself to an unfamiliar area. He may act more reticent in an unfamiliar area. When assessing functional vision and mobility skills, it is important to assess in both a familiar and unfamiliar area if possible. Because a child does not have to rely on fine detail vision as much in a familiar area, you may get different visual responses in an unfamiliar area which could add to your understanding of the child's vision.

• Impact of expectations and opportunities child has had
Familiar vs. new task: If you are testing a skill that is usually learned visually and the child has never been taught the skill, a test-teach-test model can help determine if child can learn task through manual demonstration.

• Analyzing the concept being tested and adapting to a child who is visually impaired or blind
For example, the concept of object permanence looks at a child's visual attention, memory, persistence and organization of searching behaviors. For a totally blind child, this can be assessed by looking at how a child reacts to a dropped object, first allowing the object touch a part of his body and...
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