Expanded Core Curriculum (ECC)

The Expanded Core Curriculum (ECC) provides a framework for instruction in a specialized set of vision-related skills for students who are blind or visually impaired.  While students who are blind or visually impaired are expected to follow the same core curriculum as their sighted peers, there are certain areas in which they need specific instruction because of their vision loss. These areas are referred to as the Expanded Core Curriculum: Compensatory Skills, Orientation and Mobility, Social Interaction, Independent Living, Recreation and Leisure, Sensory Efficiency, Assistive Technology, Career Education, and Self-Determination.
 
References in this area deal specifically with ECC topics and concepts, or with Core Curriculum concerns specific to students who are blind or visually impaired.  For additional ECC topics regarding students with additional disabilities, or deafblindness, see also Education for Students with Multiple Disabilities / Curriculum.
 
American Foundation for the Blind and Perkins School for the Blind
Overview of the ECC, with a listing of subjects and skills.
 
Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)
TSBVI shares the revised curriculum approved by the National Agenda Steering Committee.  This document includes complete description of the Expanded Core areas.
 
 

Resources for the Classroom

TeachingVisuallyImpaired.com
This website offers introductory information about the ECC, with sections on each of the 9 areas, as well as activity ideas for each.
 
NH Professional Development Center for Vision Education
This tip sheet by Cheryl Gannon provides an overview of the core and expanded core curricula, including a look at who is responsible for the implementation of ECC.
 
Iowa Department of Education
This 417-page document downloads as a PDF, and has extensive information about the Expanded Core Curriculum, including chapters on Self-Determination Skills (pp. 117-138) and Social Interaction Skills (pp. 137-152). Learning Expectations and Performance Indicators are provided for each age range.
 
American Foundation for the Blind (AFB)
AFB Press maintains a detailed list of print and multimedia publications, organized by core area.  Many of the resources are available for purchase.  Titles link you to the AFB store.
 
AER Arizona
A resource guide for parents, teachers, and administrators, who want to address the unique curricular needs of the learner who is visually impaired, in compliance with the Arizona State Standards.
 

Full-Text Articles

Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)
Director of Outreach Cyral Miller offers an overview of the Expanded Core Curriculum; available in English and Spanish.
 
Administrator's Toolbox, Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)
K.C. Dignan provides a comprehensive introduction to the ECC as a chapter in a larger resource for administrators.
 
American Foundation for the Blind (AFB)
Link here to a text transcript of a slide presentation by Karen Blankenship and Mary Ann Siller. Download of the original PowerPoint presentation is also available.
 
Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)
This presentation by Kathleen M. Huebner explores the challenges itinerant teachers face in providing instruction in all of the areas of the Expanded Core Curriculum.  She offers strategies for making the best use of available time. Download of the original PowerPoint presentation is also available here.
 
Council for Exceptional Children – Division on Visual Impairments (CECDVI)
Sandra Lewis of Florida State University authored this position paper proposing functional skills lessons within classroom instruction.
 
FamilyConnect
Educator and Researcher Phil Hatlen outlines benefits of the Expanded Core (ECC) for parents and professionals. Also available in Spanish.
 
American Foundation for the Blind (AFB)
AFB introduces the Core curriculum concept, and outlines Expanded Core curriculum for blind and visually impaired children and youths.
 

Web-Based Organizations and Resources

FamilyConnect
Explains Expanded Core concepts from a parent's point of view, with additional advice from experts on individual ECC areas. Also available in Spanish.
 
 

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